Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Tabarak Hussain has flown home to Dacca after four days of talks in Burma on the subject of repatriating the huge influx of refugees who have fled into Bangladesh during the past month.
GV Mass rally in progress in front of mosque in Dacca, Bangladesh (7 shots)
Saudi Arabian ambassador to bangladesh Fuad Al-Khatib being greeted by Mrs. Benita Roy
CU Saudi emblem on plane
SV Khatib handing over relief goods to Mrs. Benita Roy
GV Relief supplies being unloaded from plane (6 shots)
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Background: Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Tabarak Hussain has flown home to Dacca after four days of talks in Burma on the subject of repatriating the huge influx of refugees who have fled into Bangladesh during the past month. The refugees have alleged that they were driven from their homes at gun point by Burmese troops in a concerted campaign against the country's Moslem minority.
SYNOPSIS: The Burmese government says the people who crossed into Bangladesh are largely illegal Bengali immigrants -- but in the Bangladesh capital, Dacca, feelings about the influx were running high on Friday (9 June), when thousands of people demonstrated outside the Baitul Mokarram mosque. The angry protestors shouted slogans like "Down with the xenophobic Burmese government" and "let the minorities go back to their ancestral homes".
The demonstration coincided with Mr. Hussain's visit to Rangoon.
Meanwhile relief supplies donated by Saudi Arabia were beginning to arrive in Dacca. Saudi Arabian ambassador Fuad Al-Khatib participated in a handing over ceremony with Relief Advisor Mrs. Benita Roy.
According to official figures released in Dacca the number of refugees from Burma has now reached nearly 200,000 -- an almost impossible strain on what is already described as the poorest country in the world. But Friday's planeload of supplies was the first of nine promised by the Saudi Arabian government. After being unloaded from the plane blankets, tents and carpets were piled into lorries for immediate despatch to the refugee camps.