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Myanmar to take 1,000 Rohingya refugees in pilot programme

AFP . Yangon
22 Mar 2023 21:06:20 | Update: 22 Mar 2023 22:01:50
Myanmar to take 1,000 Rohingya refugees in pilot programme
Rohingya families arrive at a UNHCR transit centre near the village of Anjuman Para, Cox’s Bazar, south-east Bangladesh after spending four days stranded at the Myanmar border with some 6,800 refugees — Courtesy/ UNHRC

Myanmar will accept the return of around 1,000 Rohingya refugees in a pilot repatriation programme, with a junta spokesman telling AFP Wednesday the resettlement would likely begin by mid-April.

"We will receive people back according to both countries' agreement... About 1,000 people will be in (the) first batch," Zaw Min Tun told AFP.

"Myanmar side is checking some lists at this moment."

Bangladesh is home to around a million Rohingya, most of whom fled neighbouring Myanmar following a 2017 military crackdown, now subject to a UN genocide investigation.

A delegation of 17 officials from Myanmar's military regime met with around 480 refugees over the past week in a process brokered by China and partly facilitated by the United Nations.

The team were officially there to assess refugees for potential return, based partly on whether they could prove their residence in the country before the 2017 crackdown.