Myanmar still not allowing Rohingya to return: UN refugee chief

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UNITED NATIONS: Myanmar has failed to put in place conditions for the safe return of 688,000 Rohingya refugees who fled an army crackdown six months ago, the UN refugee chief said on Monday.

The refugees are sheltering in makeshift camps in Bangladesh despite an agreement reached between Myanmar and Bangladesh allowing for their return to Rakhine state.

“Let me be clear: conditions are not yet conducive to the voluntary repatriation of Rohingya refugees,” UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi told a council meeting, speaking by videoconference from Geneva.

“The causes of their flight have not been addressed, and we have yet to see substantive progress on addressing the exclusion and denial of rights that has deepened over the last decades, rooted in their lack of citizenship.”

Myanmar regards the Rohingya as immigrants from Bangladesh and denies them citizenship, even though they have been there for generations.

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