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16 Rohingya refugees share their experiences of meeting the Pope

Pope Francis meets a group of Rohingya refugees in Dhaka, Bangladesh December 1, 2017 (Photo: Reuters)

By Abdul Aziz
December 3, 2017

'We could not hold our tears when he stood in front of us'

Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh -- Pope Francis, the supreme religious figure of Catholic community, was shocked to hear the harrowing tales of atrocities from the 16 Rohingya refugees, who were brought to Dhaka on Friday to meet the Pope.

The pontiff, in reply, advised them to be patient and pray to God. Moreover, the pope also assured them that he would urge the world community to stand beside the Rohingya refugees.

The 16 Rohingya refugees have shared the above information with the Dhaka Tribune correspondent after returning back to the Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar.

The 16 Rohingya — 12 men, two women and two young girls — traveled to Dhaka from Cox’s Bazar, where refugee camps are overflowing with more than 6,20,000 Rohingya who have fled what the UN says is a campaign of ethnic cleansing by Myanmar.

They are very happy to have the assurance from the religious leader. Sarder Ayub Ali Majhi, one of the Rohingya refugees who had met the Pope, told the Dhaka Tribune: “The Pope met with all of us individually. We could not hold our tears when he stood in front of us. Many of those who were present there also broke down in tears.”

Another refugee named Sarder Lalu Majhi said: “We told the Pope about our rights and the brutal atrocities of Myanmar military. We told him that we would return to our homeland if they provide us with full citizenship and peaceful environment.”

“He listened to all of us very attentively and assured us of finding a solution after talking to the world community,” Lalu Majhi added.

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