International law for Protection of Rohingya Refugees

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International law for Protection of Rohingya Refugees
Lam-ya Mostaque — Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS), Faculty Member

Rohingya refugee problem was created in the course of numerous historical trajectories. After the 1st Rohingya influx in 1978 the Rohingya problem has been a burning issue in the Bangladesh concerns. It has become a bone of contention between Bangladesh and Myanmar and is affecting the bilateral issues severely. The recent incidents of more Rohingyas intruding in Bangladesh have again raised many questions. As the international community try to convince Bangladesh into taking and protecting the Rohingya, is there any liability of Bangladesh government to protect them? Defining who is a refugee the paper describes what the basic international legal instrument for protection of refugees. The paper than gives a overview of the Rohingya problem throughout the years. Than this paper argues that the Rohingyas in Bangladesh have the right, under established principles of international refugee law, human rights law, and humanitarian law, not to return to Myanmar until hostilities have ceased and their safety can be guaranteed and examines the obligations of the Myanmar and Bangladeshi governments under international legal norms, and fundamental principles of refugee, human rights, and humanitarian law .but it also recognizes the right of Bangladeshi authority not to accept any more Rohingyas that creates further problems for Bangladesh.. Finally, the paper offers recommendations for addressing the Rohingya crisis that go beyond a mere enunciation of the obligations imposed by international law. 

 The definition of a refugee under the article 1 of the 1951 convention relating to the status of refugees status out the basic elements through which it is determined that whether a person falls under the term “refugee”. According to the convention, “A refugee is defined in the Refugee Convention and Refugee Protocol as any person who owing to well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality and is unable, or owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country; or who , not having a nationality and being outside the country of his former habitual residence as a result of such events ,is unable or, owing to such fears, is unwilling to return to it.”

Under this definition there are four elements incorporated with being a refugee. These are:-

  1. a) They are outside of country of origin
  2. b) They are unable or unwilling to avail themselves to the protection of the country of origin
  3. c) Inability or unwillingness to return to the country of origin foe well-founded fear of persecuted.
  4. d) Persecution has to be based on race, religion, nationality, membership of particular social or political opinion.

The Refugee Convention of 1951 authorized and directed the Office of the UNHCR to seek, with the cooperation of involved states, international protection for refugees and permanent solutions to their problems. so, the basic duty to assist the refugees comes to their hands.

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