‘Right to return home must be respected’Foreign Minister Prakash Sharan Mahat has said that rights of return to their homeland of Bhutanese refugees residing in various western countries should be respected.
Foreign Minister Prakash Sharan Mahat has said that rights of return to their homeland of Bhutanese refugees residing in various western countries should be respected.
He made such remarks while participating in the High Level Plenary Meeting of the UN General Assembly on addressing the large movements of refugees and migrants, organised by the President of the General Assembly at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on Monday.
While appreciating developed countries’ move of accepting Bhutanese refugees through the resettlement process, Mahat stressed that their right to return to their homeland should be respected, as many still in refugee camps in Nepal are eagerly waiting for long to go home.
Mentioning that the issues of political refugees can hardly be resolved with “their source countries taking a back bench”, he pointed out that it “should be the responsibility of the country causing it and not the country where they are residing”.
Referring to the problems and issues of the economic migrants of which Nepal is one of the largest source countries, he stressed that the remittances they earn is not without huge and long term social, cultural and environmental costs back home. Highlighting the need of an effective rescue mechanism for the migrant workers in emergencies, he shared that Nepal promptly responds to such situation through immediate evacuation and other measures.
He also cautioned that not all migrants are refugees, so they should be distinctively treated as such, giving
example of Nepali nationals in different countries who are legally working there as per the demands of the host countries.
Mahat is leading the Nepali delegation in 71th session of the UNGA.