Dhaka, August 8
Bangladesh on Monday sought cooperation from China to repatriate Rohingya refugees to Myanmar during a visit by Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who promised better trade ties, investment and support for infrastructure development in the South Asian nation.
China had used its influence in Myanmar to broker a November 2017 agreement to repatriate about 7,00,000 Rohingya Muslim refugees who fled persecution in Myanmar in August that year.
Despite attempts to send them back, the refugees refused, fearing danger in Myanmar, which was exacerbated by the military takeover last year.
Wang arrived in Dhaka on Saturday and met PM Sheikh Hasina and Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen. They discussed bilateral and global issues before his departure on Sunday, said Shahriar Alam, Bangladesh's junior minister for foreign affairs.
Bangladesh has strong relations with China, which is a major trade partner mostly for raw materials. But maintaining close ties with Beijing is challenging for Bangladesh, which also balances diplomatic and trade relationship with both India and the US, China's main rivals.
More than 500 Chinese companies are active in Bangladesh. China is involved in the country's all major infrastructure projects such as seaports, a river tunnel and highways. — AP
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