The Bangladesh government was keeping an eye on the Rohingya refugees and getting them registered to ensure that militants did not enter the country, H T Imam, Political Adviser to Bangladesh Prime minister Sheikh Hasina, said here today.
“All our agencies are keeping a close watch on the Rohingya refugees staying in Bangladesh. The government is getting them registered with all the relevant details to ensure that no militants enter Bangladesh,” he told reporters.
Stating that Bangladesh had a “zero tolerance” policy towards militants, Imam said, “We will not allow any terrorist group to use the soil of Bangladesh to operate against any of our friends and neighbours, including India and Myanmar.”
He added that the Bangladesh government would take prompt action if there was any report of militants of the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) trying to enter the country.
Imam, however, said so far, there was no report of the Rohingya refugees trying to create a ruckus in Bangladesh.
“Our position has been that these (Rohingya) people, who have taken refuge in Bangladesh, are staying in various camps.
Those camps have to be closed and we need to send them back,” he said.
On Monday, Bangladesh Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Mohammed Shahriar Alam had said here that the Rohingya crisis was “both a humanitarian and a security” issue. He had also not ruled out the possibility of links between foreign terror groups and the ARSA.
Alam had also described the Rohingya Muslims as a “security threat to Bangladesh”.
There had been incidents in the past and that was why the Bangladesh government had started getting the Rohingya population registered, he had said.
Facing a big influx of Rohingya refugees from Myanmar, Bangladesh has called on the international community to put pressure on Myanmar to address the exodus.
According to a UN estimate, over 3,79,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled the Rakhine state in northern Myanmar and entered Bangladesh since August 25.
According to media reports, the violence began when Rohingya militants attacked police posts in Rakhine.
The Rohingya people – most of them Muslims – have accused the Myanmar military and Buddhists of Rakhine of responding with a brutal campaign against them.