By Elena Teslova
MOSCOW (AA) - The question of the oppressed Rohingya people must be solved between Myanmar and Bangladesh via dialogue, Russia’s foreign minister said on Monday.
The international community has to provide support to the two states to find a mutually appropriate solution, Sergey Lavrov told a news conference in the capital Moscow after meeting his Bangladeshi counterpart AK Abdul Momen.
"I don't see any other decision, except bilateral, except a decision based on dialogue, on mutual understanding, as it must be between two neighbors," Lavrov said.
There is no progress on the repatriation of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees to Myanmar -- which they fled to escape persecution -- but Bangladeshi officials have gathered refugees’ biometric data and now have more precise data on them, said Momen.
This information will help resolve the Rohingya issue, he said.
- Persecuted people
The Rohingya, described by the UN as the world's most persecuted people, have faced heightened fears of attack since dozens were killed in communal violence in 2012.
According to Amnesty International, more than 750,000 Rohingya refugees, mostly women and children, have fled Myanmar and crossed into Bangladesh after Myanmar forces launched a crackdown on the minority Muslim community in August 2017.
Since Aug. 25, 2017, nearly 24,000 Rohingya Muslims have been killed by Myanmar’s state forces, according to a report by the Ontario International Development Agency (OIDA).
More than 34,000 Rohingya were also thrown into fires, while over 114,000 others were beaten, said the report, titled "Forced Migration of Rohingya: The Untold Experience."
Some 18,000 Rohingya women and girls were raped by Myanmar’s army and police and over 115,000 Rohingya homes were burned down and 113,000 others vandalized, it added.
The UN has also documented mass gang rapes, killings – including of infants and young children – and brutal beatings and disappearances committed by Myanmar state forces.
In a report, UN investigators said such violations may have constituted crimes against humanity and genocidal intent.