Conditions not yet in place for safe Rohingya return – UNHCR

November 24, 2017 - 7:08 PM
Fsarul Begum, a Rohingya refugee who fled from Myanmar is carried with her new born baby as they wait to be let through after crossing the border in Palang Khali, Bangladesh October 16, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra

GENEVA — Conditions in Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state “are not in place to enable safe and sustainable returns” of more than 600,000 Rohingya refugees who fled violence to Bangladesh since late August, the United Nations refugee agency UNHCR said on Friday.

UNHCR said it had still not seen a repatriation agreement signed by the two countries on Thursday, but stressed that any returns by the “traumatized” group must be safe and voluntary. Spokesman Adrian Edwards told a news briefing: “It is important that international standards apply, and we are ready to help.”