APPG on Rights of the Rohingya

31st January 2018

Last week, during the inaugural meeting of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on the rights of the Rohingya, Anne Main was adopted to chair the new group.

Alongside Labour MP Rushanara Ali, Anne will chair the group made up of parliamentarians to protect and promote the human rights of the Rohingya refugees currently living in camps in southern Bangladesh. 

‘We must keep the pressure on all parties’ said Mrs Main. ‘Our government must continue to speak up for the Rohingya and we must continue to encourage other nations to contribute to the aid effort like the UK has.’

The group was established as a joint venture between Mrs Main, as chair of the APPG on Bangladesh, and Rushanara Ali, as chair of the APPG on Burma, following the signing of an agreement between the two countries to facilitate the mass repatriation of the Rohingya in November.

Human rights groups and governments across the world have expressed grave concerns about the lack of protections and guarantees afforded to the Rohingya by Burma. The lack of oversight was also a major concern for many groups involved in this humanitarian crisis.

The group’s statement of purpose was agreed at the first meeting and reads:

‘In recognising the persecution, murder and other atrocities committed against the Rohingya; the group will work towards protecting and enhancing the human rights and status of the Rohingya; and will assess and scrutinise any repatriation agreement made between Bangladesh and Myanmar.’

Speaking after the meeting, Anne said, ‘What concerns many of us about this agreement is the lack of safeguarding offered to the Rohingya upon their return. There are still refugees crossing the border at the moment and the idea that Burma has the final say in this fudged agreement is for the birds. We hope to be able to speak up for the Rohingya here in parliament.’

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Bangladesh APPG Report

Download the report by the Bangladesh All Party Parliamentary Group: ‘After Rana Plaza’: A report into the readymade garment industry in Bangladesh.

Click here