Bangladesh Credits Chinese Intervention With Stopping Myanmar Border Blasts

By Muktadir Rashid   21 October 2022

DHAKA — Bangladesh’s Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen says that Chinese intervention coincided with a reduction in explosions along the border with Myanmar.

“We told Myanmar’s ambassador but he could not do anything. The bomb explosions reduced after the Chinese were informed,” the minister told journalists on Thursday following a meeting with the Chinese ambassador Li Jiming.

The minister said he asked China to help relocate over 5,000 Rohingya Muslims trapped in no man’s land to Myanmar.

“We are always afraid about when they want to cross the border. This is a new assignment for [China]. Let’s see what happens,” Momen said. “We are keeping them under pressure.”

Dil Mohammad, a Rohingya leader in the border zone, told The Irrawaddy that the situation has improved in the last two weeks as shelling has ceased.

He called for the right to return home to Rakhine State.

“We want protection for our people. Who will give us protection? We don’t believe the assurances from Myanmar,” Mohammad added.

In August and September, firing and shelling from Myanmar occurred near Naikhyangchhari in the hill district of Bandarban.

Bangladesh attempted diplomatic efforts, briefed foreign diplomats and summoned Myanmar’s ambassador Aung Kyaw Moe four times since August.

“The intrusion of mortar shells, aerial firing and airspace violations from Myanmar is causing death and injuries to the people inside Bangladesh territory,” the Dhaka government announced.

Sporadic firing and shelling along the border killed a Rohingya child on September 16.

The foreign minister said recently that relations with Myanmar were almost nonexistent but Bangladesh understood China had “very good relations” with the regime.

He said Myanmar’s junta informed Bangladesh that it would honor all of Bangladesh’s agreements with Myanmar.

Momen told the media: “They will take back the Rohingya. They are saying they will provide safety and security and create a conducive environment to settle Rohingya. But nothing has happened after several days.”

He said logistical issues about the return of Rohingya were being discussed. Myanmar is busy with domestic issues, Momen added.