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OIC delegation is on visit to Rohingya camps

DHAKA, Jan 4, 2018 (BSS) - A 13-member OIC delegation today began its planned visit to Rohingya camps in Cox's Bazar as the Muslim countries major grouping visibly preferred to mount pressures on Myanmar for safe and dignified repatriation of its forcibly displaced minority people.

Officials familiar with the process said the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) delegation reached at midday the southeastern district bordering Myanmar to gauge the humanitarian crisis visiting the makeshift Rohingya shelters.

The delegation comprises executives of OIC's major statutory organ Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC) and led by its Chairman Dr. Rashid Al Balushi.

The delegation arrived in Dhaka yesterday on a four-day visit to acquire first-hand information on the defiance of human rights by Myanmar through forcing tens of thousands of minority Rohingya Muslims to flee their home and take refuge in Bangladesh.

The officials said the IPHRC delegation was being accompanied by officials from relevant departments of the OIC General Secretariat including the Minorities, Information and humanitarian affairs.

"They will discuss humanitarian needs and other issues of concern with the relevant authorities in Bangladesh and present their report to OIC Secretary General Dr Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen," the OIC said in a statement yesterday.

Despite repeated requests by the IPHRC, Myanmar authorities did not allow to undertake a fact-finding visit on the human rights situation faced by the Rohingyas in the Rakhine State.

"In the absence of a positive response from the Myanmar Government, the IPHRC has decided to visit the Rohingya camps in Cox's Bazar for the report purpose," the statement read.

Balusi told reporters yesterday in Dhaka that the OIC was also concerned about the rights of citizenship of this neglected population after the delegation met Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali and State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md. Shahriar Alam.

During the meetings, they lauded Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for providing shelters Rohingyas since the exodus began on August 25 last year following an army crackdown in their homeland in Rakhine state of Myanmar.

The delegation will leave Bangladesh on Saturday after Cox's Bazar visit.