Help end Rohingya crisis: President

BSS :: President M Abdul Hamid yesterday renewed his call to the global leaders to continue their political and humanitarian support to forcibly displaced Myanmar citizens to end the Rohingya crisis.

“Our government has given shelter to over one million displaced Rohingyas on humanitarian grounds . . . Bangladesh is directly affected by this problem as Rohingyas are forced to take shelter here,” he said while addressing a dinner speech at Bangabhaban here last night.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Jatiya Sangsad Speaker and outgoing CPA Chairperson Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury attended the function.

President Hamid hosted the dinner in honour of delegations from 144 national and provincial parliaments of 44 countries who are attending the 63rd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference being held in the capital.

The President drew the attention of the CPA leaders for the protection of Rakhine Muslims who are deprived of all rights, including citizenship and faced with existential threat due to repeated atrocities and displacements.

About the country’s progress, Hamid said the government is relentlessly working to attain socioeconomic emancipation of the people, including poverty alleviation, growth and development, women empowerment, and turn Bangladesh into a middle income country by 2021 and a developed one by 2041.

“We believe the Commonwealth member states will remain with us as useful partners in the pursuit,” he said, mentioning that Dhaka is committed to working together to nurture trust among the Commonwealth family.

The President recalled with profound respect Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who took Bangladesh to the Commonwealth fold in 1972 and CPA membership after the first parliamentary election in 1973.

Bangladesh, he said, after its independence has been closely associated with the Commonwealth as well as CPA.

Stressing the need for an equitable and inclusive global society free from poverty, exploitation and inequality, the President said the CPA states together can eradicate poverty and ensure food security, gender equality and attain sustainable development goals (SDGs) aiming to bring a positive change in the lives of people.

President Hamid congratulated Emilia Monjowa Lifaka on her election as the new chairperson of the CPA executive committee.

He hoped that under her dynamic leadership, the CPA would be able to expedite democracy and political process.

“The CPA parliamentarians will find ways of encouraging greater people to people contacts and exchanges in coming days for the welfare of people,” the President added.

Ministers, whips, the members of CPA executive committee, and high civil and military officials joined the dinner.

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