Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said the security and stability of Bangladesh could be hampered if the displaced Rohingya people cannot be repatriated soon.
"If we can't send them back soon, there's an apprehension that our security and stability will be at stake," she told Parliament while replying to a tabled question from Awami League MP Nur Mohammad (Kishoreganj-2).
The Prime Minister said, "It's very tough for us to arrange food, clothes and accommodation for over 11 lakh Myanmar nationals for an indefinite time."
This is why the government has been making diplomatic efforts to find out a permanent solution since the very beginning of the crisis for sending the forcibly-displaced Rohingyas back to their homeland, she said.
Sheikh Hasina said the displaced people, deprived of basic rights by the Myanmar authorities, are naturally suffering from dissatisfaction.
Noting that any repatriation process is a very complicated and lengthy process, she said Bangladesh and the international community are exerting pressure on Myanmar to create a congenial environment in Rakhine state.
Unfortunately, she said, it is true there has been no visible progress in the situation due to a rigid stance of Myanmar government.
Besides, Myanmar is involved in carrying out propaganda in the international arena that the Rohingya repatriation is being delayed for the noncooperation of Bangladesh, she added.
The Prime Minister said Bangladesh repeatedly raised voice in different fora that Myanmar is responsible for taking back its all the displaced people, and Myanmar will have to take the initiative in this regard.
She said Bangladesh and Myanmar signed a total of three bilateral agreements. The repatriation process would be completed within two years according to an agreement out of three. "But the Myanmar government has delayed the process by creating in many ways."
In reply to a question from treasury bench member M Abdul Latif (Chattogram-11), the Prime Minister said the government has set a target to create some 1.5 crore jobs in the next five years.
She said the present government has taken various measures to transform the young generation into human resources by creating jobs in the country in line with strategies and targets of the 7thfive-year plan (2016-20).
Who are the Rohingya?
The Rohingya, who numbered around one million in Myanmar at the start of 2017, are one of the many ethnic minorities in the country. Rohingya Muslims represent the largest percentage of Muslims in Myanmar, with the majority living in Rakhine state.
They have their own language and culture and say they are descendants of Arab traders and other groups who have been in the region for generations.
But the government of Myanmar, a predominantly Buddhist country, denies the Rohingya citizenship and even excluded them from the 2014 census, refusing to recognise them as a people.
It sees them as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.
Since the 1970s, Rohingya have migrated across the region in significant numbers. Estimates of their numbers are often much higher than official figures.
In the last few years, before the latest crisis, thousands of Rohingya were making perilous journeys out of Myanmar to escape communal violence or alleged abuses by the security forces.
Why they fled?
The latest exodus began on 25 August 2017 after Rohingya Arsa militants launched deadly attacks on more than 30 police posts.
Rohingyas arriving in an area known as Cox's Bazaar - a district in Bangladesh - say they fled after troops, backed by local Buddhist mobs, responded by burning their villages and attacking and killing civilians.
At least 6,700 Rohingya, including at least 730 children under the age of five, were killed in the month after the violence broke out, according to Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF).
Amnesty International says the Myanmar military also raped and abused Rohingya women and girls.
The government, which puts the number of dead at 400, claims that "clearance operations" against the militants ended on 5 September, but the world saw evidence that they continued after that date.
At least 288 villages were partially or totally destroyed by fire in northern Rakhine state after August 2017, according to analysis of satellite imagery by Human Rights Watch.
The UN says the Rohingya's situation is the "world's fastest-growing refugee crisis".
Before August, there were already around 307,500 Rohingya refugees living in camps, makeshift settlements and with host communities, according to the UNHCR. A further 687,000 are estimated to have arrived since August 2017.
Most Rohingya refugees reaching Bangladesh - men, women and children with barely any belongings - have sought shelter in these areas, setting up camp wherever possible in the difficult terrain and with little access to aid, safe drinking water, food, shelter or healthcare.