DHAKA: President Abdul Hamid yesterday further sought continued support from Indonesian government to ensure a safe, dignified, sustainable and voluntary return of the displaced Rohingyas who fled to Bangladesh being the worst victims of military atrocities at Rakhine state of Myanmar.
“The President sought Indonesia’s support for durable and peaceful solution to the Rohingya crisis “, a Bangabhaban spokesman quoted President Hamid as telling while Indonesian President Joko Widodo paid a pre-dinner courtesy call on him at Bangabhaban here yesterday evening.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, Acting Chief Justice Md Abdul Wahhab Miah, ministers, lawmakers and senior high officials also attended dinner hosted by President Hamid.
Noting that Bangladesh is currently hosting more than a million forcibly displaced Rohingyas, Abdul Hamid said Bangladesh have given shelter to them only on humanitarian grounds despite many challenges.
The President appreciated Indonesia’s humanitarian assistance for the Rohingyas as well as its role in the United Nations to find a durable solution to the problem.
Abdul Hamid recalled with appreciation the support of the Indonesian people to Bangladesh independence in 1971 and Indonesia’s recognition of Bangladesh on February 25, 1972.
He also reminisced about the personal acquaintance between Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the founding Father of Indonesia Dr Sukarno with due respect.
Terming the relations between the two countries very excellent, President Hamid said Bangladesh and Indonesia share a common religious, culture and traditional values in many international and regional issues.
He hoped that regional and global peace, progress and prosperity will be further brightened in the days to come.
Referring to President Widodo’s visit here, after a long break, he said this visit will open up opportunities for cooperation in newer areas and strengthen the prevailing relations.
The President requested his counterpart to ensure the access for Bangladeshi select products to Indonesian market by removing tariff and non-tariff barriers.
Stating that Bangladesh is a leading producer in pharmaceuticals, leather goods, footwear, ceramics, jute products, frozen fishes and handicrafts, which are being exported to the USA, the EU and other destinations, the President hoped to export these items to Indonesians markets also.
The Indonesian President lauded the role of Bangladesh in Rohingya issue.
He assured of providing continued support for the safe and dignified settlement of the displaced Rohingyas, hoping that the agreement signed between Bangladesh and Myanmar on Rohingyas repatriation issue will be a successful one.
Later, visiting President of Indonesia signed a visitors’ book.
Meanwhile, Indonesian first lady Iriana Joko Widodo made a courtesy call on Rashida Khatun, wife of President Hamid, here where Abdul Hamid’s family members were present.
Earlier, President Abdul Hamid and his wife Rashida Khanam received President Joko Widodo and First lady Iriana Widodo when they reached Bangabhaban.
After the meeting, the Indonesian President and his entourage attended the state dinner hosted by President Hamid followed by a cultural function.