Indian influence has already taken a hit in Bangladesh following Amit Shah’s mindless tirades equating Bangladesh with Pakistan during the NRC-CAB debates.
The Indians also failed to take any initiative in pressurising Myanmar to take back the Rohingyas, now a key objective of the Hasina government.
“Ambassador Li met Foreign Minister DrMomen for further discussions on early repatriation of the displaced people (Rohingyas) and for an early date of return to their homeland,” Minister (Counselor) and Deputy Head of Mission, Chinese Embassy in Dhaka Yan Hualong told media persons after the meeting.
Meanwhile, Ambassador Li met Chairman of Red Crescent Society of Bangladesh (BDRCS) Hafiz Ahmed Mazumdar and Vice-Chairman Prof Md Habibe Millat on Thursday.
Both sides discussed humanitarian cooperation between Bangladesh and China; and early return of Rohingyas to their homeland.
Though Bangladesh stands ready to begin Rohingya repatriation, Myanmar has been spreading propaganda and falsehood claiming that Bangladesh is “unwilling” to cooperate, said a diplomat wishing to remain unnamed.
Bangladesh, China and Myanmar are in discussion to encourage the commencement of the Rohingya repatriation process.
One is the establishment of a tripartite joint working mechanism, directly led by the Ambassadors of China and Myanmar to Bangladesh and DG of Myanmar Wing of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh.
The tripartite joint working mechanism is aimed at delving into technical and operational difficulties in the repatriation process through “candid and frequent” discussions, said the Chinese Embassy in Dhaka.
It said a common ground has been successfully identified during the first meeting of the joint working mechanism.
Bangladesh has been hosting over 1.1 million Rohingyas and most of them entered Cox’s Bazar since August 25, 2017, amid a military crackdown on Rohingyas in Rakhine state.
Not a single Rohingya was repatriated over the last two years due to Myanmar’s “failure” to build confidence among Rohingyas and lack of a conducive environment in Rakhine state, officials here said.
Bangladesh has so far handed over names of over 1 lakh Rohingyas to Myanmar authorities for verification and subsequently is expediting their repatriation efforts but Myanmar is yet to take back its nationals from Bangladesh, according to the Foreign Ministry in Dhaka.
The 3,450 Rohingyas who have been verified by Bangladesh and Myanmar, the Hindu Rohingyas and those living along the “zero-line” are prioritised groups for early repatriation, the Chinese Embassy in Dhaka said.
China is effectively leveraging its influence in Myanmar to help Bangladesh, which in turn will help boost its grip on the Hasina government.
The Hasina government, a close friend of India so far, is upset with the NRC-CAA ruckus and recently cancelled the India visit of its Home and Foreign Minister as well as a meeting of the Joint Rivers Commission.