Dhaka has urged Canada to consider providing Covid-19 jabs to Bangladesh directly as well as through the COVAX initiative to help the country inoculate the Rohingya refugees and host communities.
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen held a virtual meeting with Canadian Minister of International Development Karina Gould on Wednesday and made the request.
Canada has so far contributed 545 million dollars and 30 million surplus Covid vaccine doses to COVAX. The Canadian Minister is a co-chair in the COVAX Humanitarian Buffer.
Gould assured Momen that Canada would give due consideration to Bangladesh’s request to provide jabs, including for the displaced Rohingya Muslims and the host communities.
She also recalled that Canada has already provided medicine and oxygen concentrator support to Bangladesh through UNICEF and some NGOs, and said that such assistance, including vaccine support, may come again.
Informing that the government has already commenced vaccinating the refugees over 55 years numbering around 48,000, the Foreign Minister highlighted the fact that not a single Rohingya person in Bangladesh has so far died due to Covid.
Underscorimg the natural hazards that Kutupalong camps have been facing, Momen said the UN and the international community need to come forward to support the humanitarian operations in Bhashan Char as soon as possible.
The Bangladeshi Foreign Minister also thanked Canada for its consistent political and humanitarian support for the displaced and persecuted Rohingyas, including for the ongoing genocide case in the International Court of Justice (ICJ).