President Abdul Hamid yesterday sought support from Indonesia for a safe, dignified, sustainable return of the Rohingyas to Rakhine State in Myanmar.
He made the appeal while visiting Indonesian President Joko Widodo paid a courtesy call on him at the Bangabhaban in the evening.
Widodo arrived here yesterday afternoon on a two-day visit at the invitation of Hamid. The Indonesian president was received by Hamid and his wife Rashida Khanam after Widodo and his wife Iriana Widodo landed at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.
Mentioning that Bangladesh is currently hosting more than a million forcibly displaced Rohingyas, Hamid said Bangladesh on purely humanitarian grounds has sheltered them despite facing many challenges.
He recalled with appreciation the support of the Indonesian people to Bangladesh’s independence in 1971.
He also remembered the personal acquaintance between Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and founding Father of Indonesia Dr Sukarno.
Terming the existing relations between the two countries excellent, Hamid said the relations would be strengthened further following the visit of Indonesian president, said President’s Press Secretary Joynal Abedin, quoting Hamid.
He also sought cooperation from Widodo in removing tariff and non-tariff barriers as well as concessional market access for Bangladeshi selected products to Indonesian markets.
The Indonesian president expressed his hope that the bilateral agreements, which were signed between Bangladesh and Myanmar for return of Rohingyas, would be fruitful and also expected that the displaced Rohingyas would go back to Rakhine with dignity and safely.
He also praised the socioeconomic development of Bangladesh in the meeting.
Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Shahriar Alam and secretaries concerned to President Hamid were present during the meeting.
Meanwhile, Indonesian First lady Iriana Widodo also maid a courtesy call on President Hamid’s wife Rashida at the Bangabhaban.
During the meeting, they talked about mutual interest of the two countries, said President’s Press Secretary Joynal.
After the meeting, the Indonesian president and his entourage attended the state dinner hosted by Hamid and also enjoyed a cultural programme.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, Justice Md Abdul Wahhab Miah, who is performing the functions of the chief justice, and several Cabinet members also took part in the dinner.
The Indonesian president will visit Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar today. He will leave for Afghanistan tomorrow.
Foreign Minister AH Mahmood yesterday evening met President Widodo and discussed issues of mutual interest.
*News Searching By Thedailystar*