President Jokowi arrives at Cox`s Bazar, reviewes handling of Rohingya refugees

President Jokowi arrives at Cox`s Bazar, reviewes handling of Rohingya refugees

Illustration. Rohingya refugees at the Thengkali refugee camp, Kutupalong, Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. (ANTARA News/Monalisa)

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) and First Lady Iriana arrived at Cox`s Bazar in Bangladesh on Sunday, to review the handling of Rohingya refugees sheltered in a refugee camp.

The President and First Lady arrived at Cox`s Bazar Airport at 12.40 local time and was welcomed by Deputy Commissioner Md. Ali Hossain, Superintendent of Police Dr. AKM Iqbal Hossain and Indonesian Foreign Minister`s expert staff for Institutional Affairs Salman Al Farisi.

After being briefed by Ali Hossain on the efforts to handle Rohingya refugees in Cox`s Bazar, President Widodo and First Lady Iriana went to Camp Jamtoli, one of refugee shelters in the area.

The President took the 70 km-long road to reach the camp by car. Along the way, the people of Cox`s Bazar welcomed President Jokowi upon his arrival, with some of them capturing the moment through their devices.

Accompanying the President and First Lady Iriana during the visit were Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung, Special Staff Coordinator Teten Masduki and Indonesian Ambassador to Bangladesh Rina Soemarno.

Earlier, Indonesia had sent humanitarian aid in the form of 30 tons of rice, 14 thousand blankets, 17,400 sarongs, 2,490 packages of instant food, 20 large tents, 10 flexible emergency water tanks, 600 family kits, 900 packages of clothing, one ton of sugar, 10 electric generators, 325 boxes of cooking oil, and two thousand boxes of biscuits to the Rohingya refugees through the Government of Bangladesh.

The Bangladeshi government has praised and thanked Indonesia for its assistance to Muslim Rohingyas.

"Our country is highly pleased to receive the visit by His Excellency, President (Joko Widodo). It`s a great honor for us," Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Abul Hasan Hassan Mahmood Ali was quoted by his Indonesian counterpart, Retno Marsudi, as saying during a meeting with President Joko Widodo at Hotel Pan Pacific Sonargaon in Dhaka on Saturday.

Meanwhile, President Joko Widodo lauded good cooperation between Indonesia and Bangladesh as friendly countries.

The cooperation is particularly related to intensive communication between the foreign ministers of the two countries in handling humanitarian crisis in Myanmar`s Rakhine state and its impact on Bangladesh, he said.

"I have received a lot of reports from my foreign minister about good cooperation between Indonesia and Bangladesh," the president said.

He also praised Bangladesh for accommodating Rohingya refugees from Rakhine state and for allowing Indonesian humanitarian workers to assist them in refugee camps in Cox`s Bazar.

As a friendly country, Indonesia has tried to alleviate Bangladesh`s burden by sending humanitarian aid to the Rohingya refugees, he said.

Reported by Hanni Sofia Soepardi