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Asean should guarantee safe return of Rohingya to Myanmar

Rohingya refugees crossing from Myanmar into Palang Khali, near Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, in November 2017. Of the 911,000 people sheltered in Cox's Bazar, nearly 740,000 left Rakhine state following brutal violence in August 2017.
Rohingya refugees crossing from Myanmar into Palang Khali, near Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, in November 2017. Of the 911,000 people sheltered in Cox's Bazar, nearly 740,000 left Rakhine state following brutal violence in August 2017.PHOTO: REUTERS

Asean has a lot of work to do for the sake of its own relevancy, as Myanmar and Bangladesh make another attempt to repatriate thousands of Muslim Rohingya to strife-torn Rakhine state while the situation on the ground remains unsafe.

The authority in Myanmar's capital Naypyitaw announced last week that Myanmar would accept 3,450 refugees from the list of 22,000 provided by Bangladesh earlier this month, as the first batch of people to resettle in Myanmar.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on August 25, 2019, with the headline 'Asean should guarantee safe return of Rohingya to Myanmar '. Print Edition | Subscribe