Myanmar police kill 8 protesters in Rakhine State

Bangladesh, Myanmar plan Rohingya repatriation in 2 years

A Myanmar agency set up to oversee repatriation said in a statement last Thursday that two temporary "repatriation and assessment camps" and one other site to accommodate returnees had been set up.

Many have questions whether Rohingya would return to Myanmar under the current circumstances, and whether Myanmar would accept them and allow them to live freely. But it said the return effort envisages "considering the family as a unit", with Myanmar to provide temporary shelter for those returning before rebuilding houses for them.

According to the Information Committee, the Foreign Affairs Ministry - also led by Suu Kyi - made the demand to its Bangladeshi counterpart during a bilateral meeting held in Naypyidaw in mid-November.

"The worst would be to move these people from camps in Bangladesh to camps in Myanmar, keeping an artificial situation for a long time and not allowing for them to regain their normal lives", said Guterres, who was previously the head of UNHCR for 10 years.

Around 1 million Rohingyas are now sheltering at cramped and squalid refugee camps in southeastern Bangladesh, after fleeing cycles of violence in Rakhine state across the border, including at least 655,000 who crossed into the country since the military crackdown in August.

"Even though we are talking about a two-year process, it totally depends on how the two countries cooperate", Myanmar government Spokesman Zaw Htay said. Zaw Htay said at least 500 Hindus and 500 Muslims will be in the first group to return.

The Rohingya, described by the United Nations as the world's most persecuted people, have faced heightened fears of attack since dozens were killed in communal violence in 2012.

Myint Kyaing, permanent secretary at Myanmar's Ministry of Labour, Immigration and Population, told Reuters earlier this month Myanmar would be ready to begin processing least 150 people a day through each of the two camps by January 23.

Rakhine State government secretary Tin Maung Swe told RFA the incident occurred at the town's government office.

Myanmar, however, wanted Bangladesh to take preventive measures against possible Rohingya attacks and said it gave Dhaka a list with the names of 1,000 alleged militants. "In Myanmar, Rohingyas have been the victims of ethnic cleansing at the hands of Myanmar's security forces and also local vigilantes".

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