EC needs gain confidence of Bangladesh people

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Dhaka : US Ambassador to Bangladesh Marcia Bernicat on Thursday said they need to know a lot more details about government’s proposal to relocate Rohingyas to Hatiya.

‘We asked lot of questions about the proposal because we are asked to support the proposal. We need to know lot more details’, she said mentioning that there was no agreement and disagreement with the government proposal.

Bernicat said this is the right time to put the real pressure on Myanmar to find a solution to Rohingya issue as the US believes the solution lies in Myanmar.

‘Now is the time to apply appropriate and true international pressure so that this issue can be resolved’, she told reporters after her meeting with Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader at the Secretariat.

Earlier, Bangladesh sought international partners’ support in implementing the relocation plan of Rohingyas to Hatiya by providing assistance in developing the island and transporting the Myanmar nationals living in Bangladesh to the new place of their residence.

Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali made the request to Bangladesh’s bilateral, UN and other international partners while briefing the members of the diplomat community on the situation of Myanmar refugees and undocumented Myanmar nationals at the State guesthouse Padma on Sunday.

He informed the international community that the government of Bangladesh has decided to relocate this population to Thengar Char, an Island next to Hatiya Island in the Bay of Bengal to ensure humanitarian assistance to the Myanmar nationals.

The US Ambassador said they do not want to see Rohingyas are provided more trauma as they have already gone through it.

Describing her experience of visiting Rohingya camps, she said, ‘I have to tell you, it’s enormously heart-breaking to see (people’s sufferings).’

She appreciated Bangladesh’s role and hosting Rohingyas for decades with enormously generous support.

Responding to another question, the US Ambassador said they are very interested about the electoral process here in a way that Bangladeshis are interested about US electoral process.

‘Our job is to understand your election process to make sure that our counterparts back in Washington understand as well’, she added.

She said they, as Bangladesh’s friend and supporter, are very interested in seeing how every step takes place in the electoral process as the US helps strengthen Bangladesh’s democratic institutions.

‘EC (election commission), every other steps in the process, needs the confidence of the Bangladeshi people’, Bernicat said.

She said they discussed the whole range of issues with the minister as the US got new administration under President Donald Trump.

They also discussed security issues and ways to prevent people becoming radicalised.

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