HRW urges Bangladesh to stop expelling Rohingya students

MNA Editorial Desk: Bangladesh should cease the expulsions of Rohingya refugee students from schools and ensure that all children are able to receive a formal education, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said in a statement on Tuesday.

It came up with the call, alleging that scores of Rohingya refugee children lacking Bangladeshi citizenship were dismissed from schools since late January 2019.

The expulsions were made from the secondary schools near the refugee settlements in Cox’s Bazar as per “a government notice”, according to the US-based rights body.

“The Bangladeshi government’s policy of tracking down and expelling Rohingya refugee students instead of ensuring their right to education is misguided, tragic, and unlawful,” said Bill Van Esveld, senior children’s rights researcher at the HRW.

“Education is a basic human right. The solution to children feeling compelled to falsify their identities to go to secondary school isn’t to expel them but to let them get the education they deserve.”

In an interview with the HRW in January and February, 13 refugee children, including four girls, explained how they were expelled from six secondary schools near their settlements, the statement noted.

“As long as Rohingya refugee children aren’t able to obtain a formal education in the camps, Bangladesh should allow them to enroll in local schools,” Van Esveld said in the statement. “The government should stop thwarting Rohingya students’ right to learn.”

Bangladesh hosts an estimated 1.2 million ethnic Rohingya refugees, more than half of whom fled from Myanmar in August 2017 alone.


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