US welcomes UN, Myanmar memo leading to possible return of Rohingya

The US welcomed late Thursday the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Myanmar government to support the creation of conditions for return of Rohingya refugees to their country.

“This is a positive step,” said the statement from State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert.

“We see this MoU as a confidence-building measure that, if effectively implemented, could allow much-needed humanitarian assistance to reach all affected communities and assist Burma in creating the necessary conditions for voluntary return and to support recovery and resilience-based development for the benefit of all communities living in Rakhine State.

“We encourage the Burmese (Myanmar) government to fulfill its commitment to work with UNHCR and UNDP to implement the recommendations of the Kofi Annan-led Advisory Commission on Rakhine State,” she noted.

Over 600,000 of the stateless Indo-Aryan-speaking minority had crossed the border into Bangladesh since August 25, 2017. In 2013, the Muslim-dominated minority was described by the UN as one of the “most persecuted minorities” in the world.

Source: Kuwait News Agency