International community need to very strongly put pressure on Myanmar authorities to recognise the citizenship issue of Rohingya Refugees, says the UN Secretary General in a joint press conference in Bangladesh .

“We need both accountability and political solution creating the conditions for the people to be able to have a normal life in their own country,” The UN chief told  this in a joint press conference on Monday in Bangladesh .

He conveyed deep gratitude to Bangladesh for opening the border, while many other countries are closing the door.

However, he said the solidarity expressed by the international community has not been translated into sufficient support to the Rohingya people sheltered in Bangladesh.

“We need to express international solidarity. It is not the responsibility of Bangladesh but the whole world. We need to do everything possible to support Bangladesh.

He said they need international community to unite and very strongly put pressure on Myanmar authorities to recognise these needs including addressing citizenship issue.

The UN Chief laid emphasis on other basic rights of Rohingyas saying there is clear will within the Security Council to ask Myanmar to create the conditions for safe return of Rohingyas to their own homes in Myanmar.

“I have no doubt that Security Council is united in requesting Myanmar to create conditions for return of Rohingyas,” he said acknowledging UNSC remained divided in previous occasions on various issues including Syria.

Asked whether there was any deal with Myanmar ignoring the citizenship issue, the UN Secretary General said there was no such agreement.

There is no agreement between UN and Myanmar that these people should not be called Rohingyas. For the UN they are called Rohingyas, for Myanmar they are called Bengali Muslims. “This disagreement exists.”

Asked whether the UN is compromising on citizenship issue, the UN chief said it is very clear that they are Rohingyas and it is not compromise rather it is a clear demonstration that they are not agreed.

World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim also spoke. World Bank Country Director Qimiao Fan and UN Resident Coordinator in Dhaka Mia Seppo were also present.

Elaborating about political solution, Guterres said political solution is clear – to create conditions for the people to be able to return in safety and dignity in their places of origin or places they might choose having all the rights, normal lives, also addressing the issue of citizenship.

To make that happen, the UN chief said this requires “very persistent commitment” of the international community.

On question of accountability, Guterres said the UN Security Council fact finding missions visited Bangladesh and Myanmar and there will be new report very soon.

He also referred the International Criminal Court (ICC) as Bangladesh already responded to its request.

Earlier, Guterres called upon the international community to step up efforts to help Rohingyas living in Bangladesh.

“My appeal to the int’l community is to step up support,” he said.

The UN Chief conveyed the message through a tweet after visiting Rohingyas in Cox’s Bazar district.

“Nothing could’ve prepared me for the scale of crisis and extent of suffering I saw today in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. I heard heartbreaking accounts from Rohingya refugees that will stay with me forever,” he said.

Guterres said the safety of the Rohingyas during this monsoon season is the priority one as they, what he says, cannot allow the monsoons to wash away the hopes of the Rohingyas.

“As many as 200,000 Rohingyas need to be relocated. We cannot allow the monsoons to wash away the hopes of the Rohingya refugees I met today in Bangladesh,” he made remark while visiting Rohingya camp in Kutupalong in the Cox’s Bazar district.

Earlier, he heard “unimaginable” accounts of killing and rape from Rohingya refugees who recently fled Myanmar.

“They (Rohingyas) want justice and a safe return home,” he tweeted from Rohingya camp on Monday.

In another tweet ahead of reaching the Rohingya camp the UN Chief said the Rohingyas are one of the most discriminated and vulnerable communities on the earth.

“The Rohingya refugee crisis is a humanitarian and human rights nightmare. I thank Bangladesh for its generosity in hosting the refugees,” he said.

He said he is along with Jim Yong Kim in Cox’s Bazar on a mission of solidarity with Rohingya refugees and the communities supporting them.

“The compassion generosity of the Bangladeshi people shows the best of humanity and saved many thousands of lives,” he said in another tweet message.

Antonio Guterres and World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim arrived here on Monday morning to visit Rohingya communities and humanitarian workers in Cox’s Bazar district to advocate for increased donor support.

Report by Humayun kabir ,Bangladesh.

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