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Jolie praises Bangladesh’ PM Hasina as exemplary leader

UNHCR Special Envoy Angeline Jolie shakes hand with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during a courtesy call at the latter’s official residence, Ganabhaban, in Dhaka on Wednesday, February 6, 2019 Focus Bangla

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DHAKA, Feb 7, 2019, Dhaka Tribune. Visiting Special Envoy of the UNHCR Angeline Jolie has highly appreciated Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for sheltering huge number of Rohingyas in Bangladesh, calling her an example-setting leader in the world, reported the Dhaka Tribune.

Jolie came up with such remarks when she paid a courtesy call on the prime minister at Ganabhaban in Dhaka on Wednesday evening, reports BSS.

After the meeting, the prime minister’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed the reporters.

Jolie said that leaders like Sheikh Hasina were very few in the world at this moment.

She said that a huge number of Rohingyas had created serious burden for Bangladesh and it was a very tough task to manage such a big population in the shelter camps.

In this regard, she assured that the UN, UNHCR and the World Bank would work together to lessen the pressure on Bangladesh.

Jolie put emphasis on creating a congenial atmosphere for repatriation of the Myanmar nationals now staying at Cox’s Bazar.

She also expressed concern about the future of Rohingya children, saying their future was being destroyed although Bangladesh was trying to cooperate for their education, healthcare and other issues.

Jolie mentioned that she heard about recent incidents of torture and killing of the Rohingya women at Rakhine state of Myanmar.

On Monday and Tuesday, the UNHCR special envoy had visited several Rohingya refugee camps at Teknaf and Ukhiya in Cox’s Bazar.

During their meeting on Wednesday, the prime minister welcomed Jolie’s statement that the Rohingya crisis must be resolved.

Saying Bangladesh had signed an agreement with its next door neighbour Myanmar for the repatriation of its nationals, Hasina expressed disappointment over the delay in its implementation.

She said nearly 1.1 million Rohingyas were given shelter in Bangladesh, while some 40,000 new babies were so far born at the refugee camps.

Referring to her government’s initiative to relocate the Rohingyas at Bhashan Char, the prime minister said that over 100,000 refugees would get temporary shelter with better living condition there.

In this regard, she elaborated bitter experience of the Bangalis in 1971 when over 10 million people took shelter in neighbouring India.

Hasina also described the moments of her life when she along with members of the Bangabandhu family including her mother was in a state of house arrest in 1971, as well as her life in exile for more than six years after the brutal assassination of her father Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 1975.

Angeline Jolie expressed grief after listening to the prime minister’s painful stories.

Sheikh Hasina’s nephew Radwan Mujib Siddiq Boby and the prime minister’s Principal Secretary Nojibur Rahman were also present during the meeting.

‘Deeply moved’

Earlier in the day, Hollywood superstar Angelina Jolie also visited the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum at the city.

Jolie paid homage to the Father of the Nation by placing a wreath at his portrait in front of the museum at Dhanmondi Road No 32, reports UNB.

She was briefed about Bangabandhu’s history and given the tour of the museum Radwan Mujib Siddiq Boby, the grandson of Sheikh Mujib and trustee of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Memorial Trust.

“I am deeply moved to be in the very special house…,” Jolie wrote in a message on the museum visitors’ book.

She also stated that she was humbled and inspired while she found the museum adorned very well, according to a press release.

Bangabandhu Memorial Trust’s CEO Mashoora Hossain, Secretary of the Foreign Ministry’s Maritime Affairs Unit Rear Admiral (retd) M Khurshed Alam, and officials of the UNHCR and the Foreign Ministry were also present during her visit to the museum.

Jolie arrived in Bangladesh on Monday on a five-day visit to assess the humanitarian needs of the Rohingya refugees and some of the more critical challenges Bangladesh is facing as a host country. It is also her first ever trip to the country.

Earlier on Wednesday, she also held a meeting with Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and Foreign Secretary Md Shahriar Alam after returning from Cox’s Bazar.

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