Climate migration

IndexDhaka, 7th April 2016. Today 12 civil society organizations and network facilitated by COAST has organized a seminar at Cirdap international conference centre, title “Setting Agenda for World Humanitarian Summit Istanbul: Climate Induced Displacement, Humanitarian and Right Perspectives”. Where the speakers urged to place the issue of climate induced displacement in UN World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) which to be held in later of this month, they also urged government and other international government to demand new UN protocol for climate induce displacement. The co organizers of the seminar were BAPA, BIPNetCCBD, BNNfWHS, BCJF, CCDF, CLEAN, CGC, CDP, CSRL, FEJB, EquityBD and COAST.
The seminar was Chair by Dr Qazi Kholiquzzaman Chairman PKSF, the seminar was moderated by Mr Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of COAST, Chief Guest of the seminar was French Ambassador Mrs Sophie Aubert, other guests of the seminar was Mr. Shaha Kamal Secretary Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief, Mr Jeremy Wallard of OCHA Bangkok and Dr Atiq Rahman BCAS. Other speakers of the seminar were Mr Shamuddoha of CPRD, Mrs Hasina Inam of DCA, Mr Nayeem Waraha of BRAC, Mr Hasib Khan of RIC, Mr Nasir from ActionAid, and Mr Mahbub CARE. Key note presentations especially on WHS has given by Mr. Shawkat Ali Tutul COAST and on advocacy on climate induce displacement given by Mr Sayed Aminul Haque COAST.
French Ambassador Mrs. Sophie said Climate induced displacement is happening because of human error it is not the natural phenomena. Ministry Secretary Mr Saha Kamal said that government delegation in the WHS summit will place the issue of climate induce displacement as Bangladesh is hardly responsible for climate change impacts. Dr Atiq Rahman of BCAS, the developed countries that are responsible for high carbon emission they must consider to take responsibilities of climate induce displacement, it will be more than 20 million in Bangladesh by the year 20150, and he also mentioned this is highest security issue too. Mr Jeremy Wallard of OCHA said that Bangladesh will get highest importance in the WHS process especially in high level session on disaster and climate change. Mr. Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of COAST mentioned that now the cross boarder issue of climate induced displacement has been recognized in state led initiatives facilitated by the Nansen Initiatives, civil society is doing track two campaign to support of Bangladesh especially to get new UN protocol in this regard, there will be side event with 15 global civil society and humanitarian organizations in Istanbul. Dr Qazi Kholliquzaman Chair of the seminar said that Bangladesh has the capacity to solve the problem with own capacity but it has to raise the issue in international level continuously.

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Book_IndexOne article titled Climate-induced migrants need dignified recognition’ written by Syed Aminul Haque, Coordinator-Secretariat of EquityBD has recently published in an intentional book. The book titled Organizational Perspectives on Environmental Migration’ has been published by Routledge of London and New York. The book is a collection of chapters exploring how organizations have responded to migration and displacement linked to environmental change. Academics and practitioners explore how environmental migration has shaped the work of their organizations and projects. The book is edited by François Gemenne and Kerstin Rosenow-Williams.

Aminul Haque in his article talks about the vulnerability of Bangladesh due t climate change, major scenario of climate migrants in the country, government practices to address the problem, EquityBD’s campaign on this issue, challenges in future dealing with climate migrants, on way forward of the issue.

The preface of the book says, over the past decade, international organizations (IOs) and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have increasingly focused their efforts on the plight of environmental migrants in both industrialized and developing countries. However, to date very few studies have analyzed the influence and rhetoric of advocacy groups in the debates on environmental migration. Organizational Perspectives on Environmental Migration fills this lacuna by drawing together and examining the related themes of climate change and environmental degradation, migration and organizational studies to provide a fresh perspective on their increasing relevance. In order to assess the role of IOs and NGOs in the environmental migration discourse and to understand their interaction and their ways of addressing the topic, the book contains a wide-range of contributions covering the perspectives of organizational sociologists, political scientists, anthropologists, geographers, lawyers and practitioners. The chapters are organized thematically around the perspectives of key actors in the area of environmental migration, including IOs, courts and advocacy groups. The geographically diverse and interdisciplinary range of contributions makes this volume an essential foundational text for organizational responses to environmental migration. This volume will be of great interest to students and scholars of migration studies, international relations, organizational sociology, refugee law and policy, and development studies.

IMG_8644Dhaka, 26th January 2016. A group of rights based Civil Society Organizations condemned the eviction of the Klyanour Slum in Dhaka. About 27 organizations also demanded the integration of the Internal Displacement policy in the upcoming 7th Five Year policy to ensure effective rehabilitation of the climate induced displaced people. They raised the issue from a human chain and organized today in front of the National Press Club, Dhaka.

The human chain and rally was moderated by Mustafa Kamal Akanda of EquityBD. Among others ASM Badrul Alam of Bangladesh Krishak Federation, Pradip Kumar Roy of Online Knowledge Society, Advocate Shafikul Islam of Bangalesh Krishak Federation, Rafiqul Islam Pothik of Gono Forum, Engineer Foyez Ahmed of Jatyo Sromik Federation, Firuja Begum of Jago Nari, Aminur Rasul Babul of Unnayan Dhara Trust and Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of EquityBD spoke at the occasion.

On behalf of the organizers Mustafa Kamal Akanda placed the major demands which are: Assigning a national organization for collecting data on climate displaced and draft effective and sustainable plan for climate displaced, proposing vocational and skill development training for them, cities must be equipped enough to accommodate the climate displaced people, water and sanitation services must be ensured for them, an Internal Displacement Policy must be incorporated in the upcoming 7th five year plan.

Rezaul Karim Chowdhury said, within 2050 it is estimated that one of each five person of Bangladesh will be climate migrant. We have to be ready to address their problems. About 35% people of Dhaka are living in slums and among the slum dwellers about 90% people are climate induced displaced people. Most of them have come form coastal areas of Bangladesh. 90% of the Kalyanpur slum are form Bhola island. Activities like such slum eviction will hamper Prime Ministers international position in favour of Climate Migrants.

Prodip Kumar Roy said, Bangladesh can’t be a Middle income country without the participation of the slum dwellers. If we want international support for climate displaced as we have been demanding in different global climate conferences, we will have to establish good example within our country.

Badrul Alam said, due to climate change about 30-40 million people will be displaced in Bangladesh, what will be there shelter? It is the state who must take their responsibilities.

Rafiqul Islam Pothik said, eviction of Klaynpur slum is an example of violation of law and regulation. There is still an embargo in doing so. Being a climate vulnerable country it is a bit shameful for us to see such an eviction, as most of the evicted people are climate induced migrated people.

Engineer Foyez said, Our Prime Minister was the first head of the government who demanded a separate UN protocol for the climate migrants. So, in her own country climate migrants must get sustainable solution with their dignity.

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index_4437Dhaka, 29 April 2015: The coastal embankment of Bangladesh erodes every year and the government spend hugeamount of money for its maintenance. But if the landless people were allowed to live on the slope of the embankment they would happily maintain the embankment through making their livelihood on it. This is how we could obstruct the tidal surge and salinity intrusion at almost free of cost. Today in a discussion on remembering 29 April Cyclone of 1991 at the National Press Club the speakers mention this.

21 coastal right based organizations called a discussion on remembering the devastating cyclone of 1991 that killed almost 140 thousand people titled “Remembering Cyclone 1991 and Save Coastal Land” today at the National Press Club. The organizations are CDP, COAST Trust, Dak DIye Jai, DOCAP, Dwip Unnayan Sangstha, Grameen Jana Unnayan Sangstha, Humanity Watch,ISDE, MMC, Nalsity Model Unnayan Society, PALS, PGUS, PRAN, Prantajan, Sangkalpa Trust, Sangram, SDS, SPEED Trust, Udayan Bangladesh and YPSA.

The key speakers of the discussion are Mr. A K M Jahangir Hossaio, Member of Parliament from the coastal area, Mr. Naim Gawhar Wara of Disaster Forum, Mr. Aminur Rasul Babul of Unnayan Dhara Trust, Mr. Badrul Alam of Bangladesh Krishok Federation, Chowdhury Mohammad Masum of Sangram, Sed Aminul Huq of EquityBD, Hafez Kari Mawlana Abdul Khalek Sanobi, a survivor of 1991 Cyclone. Mustafa Kamal Akanda of COAST Trust moderates the discussion while Mr. Shawkat Ali Tutul of COAST Trust presents the keynote paper through powerpoint presentation.

Aminur Rasul Babul says, COAST implemented a pilot project on sustainable embankment management through rehabilitation of the landless people on it. The then government asked for a survey report from Water Development Board based on this successful project to implement all over the country. But that report was never published.

Naim Gawhar Wara of Disaster Forum says, isolated initiatives like embankment building or tree plantation is not enough to save the coastal land from huge erosion and salinity intrusion. It requires an integrated National Coastal Management Plan if we really mean the development. He adds, the cyclone shelters are not suitable for staying 48 hours or more with only 2 square feet of space for everyone. We need to introduce cyclone resilient houses in the coastal area. It requires resource.

Badrul Alam of BKF says, the rich and industrialised countries are solely responsible for the natural disasters in the southern countries. They have historical responsibility of colonial extraction and environment pollution. So, we need to be strong enough to negotiate the compensation in the climate conferences.

As the chief guest of the discussion Mr A K M Jahangir Hossain MP says in his speech, the canals inside the embankments are not taken care though those could be quite useful to drain the water out of the embankment. He adds, there are sluice gates that are being misused by the rich and local influential people and they are causing harm to the farmers by water logging or dryness.

Syed Aminul Huq of EquityBD says, Government should spend money for a permanent and appropriate embankment instead of spending lot of money every year in the name of repairing. Thus the coastal land could be safe and would stop the migration towards the cities.

Shawkat Ali Tutul depicts the sufferings of the people from tide and flood in Bhola and Cox’s Bazar during the last two years in his PowerPoint presentation and recommends for concrete embankments, as the soiled one is not strong enough to remain facing acute erosion and flood.

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index4South Asia and Indian Ocean regional conference on Climate Change, Disaster and Human Mobility

Khulna 5th April 2015: South Asia and Indian Ocean regional conference on Climate Change, Disaster and Human Mobility is held during 3 to 5 April 2015 organized by Ministry of Foreign Affairs,

Govt. of Bangladesh in cooperation IoM and Nansen Initiative (Led by Govt. of Switzerland and Norway) in Khulna, Bangladesh.

More than 90 participants representing 10 countries (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Madagascar, Maldives, Mauritius, Nepal, Oman, Sri Lanka, Pakistan (with observer status) along with the representatives from Nansen Initiatives, International organizations, UN Agencies, civil societies and research organizations met in the event in Khulna during the dates where there was a field visit on the issue for all the participants on 4th April.

A draft summary of conclusions has been circulated among the participants. Concluding session was moderated by Mr. Riaz Hamidullah Director General of MOFA where the chief guest was Mr Md Abul Kalam Azad, the Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister and the other speakers were Mr. Md. Shahidul Haque, Foreign Secretary of Bangladesh, Prof Walter Kaelin, Envoy of the Chairmanship of Nansen Initiative, Mr Christian Fotsch, Swiss Ambassador to Bangladesh, and Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of COAST / EquityBD as a civil society representatives.

In the sideline Bangladeshi civil society groups have had a press conference and photo exhibition on 2nd April at Khulna press club.

Category of the reference:

Reference:
* [A BD Civil Society Call_Climate induced displaced]
* [Agenda Nansen Initiative Regional Consultation in South Asia]
* [Background Paper]
* [Draft Summery of Conclusions_Nansen Initiatives]
Presentation from International delegation:
* [ActionAid migration]
* [Ainun Nishat BRAC Uni_Migration at Khulna]
* [April 2015 ICIMOD Presentation Action Research_SB2]
* [Compendium 2013 flyer]
* [Conclusion Document Nansen Initiative Pacific Consultation FINAL]
* [Conclusions Central American Consultation in English (FINAL)]
* [EN IOM Perspectives on Migration Environment and Climate Change_2Sep2014]
* [EN MECC_IOM_Infosheet_Capacity building]
* [Horn of Africa Outcome Document (Final May 2014)]
* [icddrb_Streatfield_Nansen_03Apr2015]
* [IOM 105th Council – MECC Thematic]
* [IOM ppt 3Apr2015]
* [Justin Ginetti IDMC_IDMC NI South Asia Presentation FINAL]
* [Kelly Flynn_objectives_of_the_consultation]
* [Kelly Flynn_social_media]
* [Key messages Khunla 1]
* [Nansen Initiative SEA Regional Consultation FINAL Agenda]
* [NANSEN Presentation by UNHCR]
* [Nansen-fin-MAX]
* [Nansen-fin-MAX-1]
* [Oxfam_presentation Climate Displacement_Nansen Initiative_Oxfam_Tanvir]
* [presentation for the nansen initiative in Khulna]
* [Questionnaires Results Nansen Initiative Regional Consultation in South Asia]
* [Sabira Coelho IOM ROAP_IOM RO BKK]
* [SEA Regional Consultation FINAL Summary of Conclusions]
* [Walter Kaelin, NI_Concepts and legal framework]
* [Walter Kaelin_Nansen Intro_Khulna_April2015]
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index2Khulna, 2nd April 2015: Today fourteen Bangladeshi civil society organizations and networks have organized a press conference in Khulna press club, and they have mentioned that “Climate induced displacement deserve protection regime in national, regional and international level”. They have organized the press conference on the eve of inter state consultation on climate induced and disaster related displacement being happened in Khulna during the period of 3 to 5 April organized by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Government of Bangladesh with the support of Nansen Initiative. Nansen Initiative is co chaired by government of Norway and Switzerland. There will be more then hundred participants from fourteen countries of SAARC, Ocean region countries and also from different UN and international organizations.
Fourteen organizations are BAPA (Bangladesh Poribesh Andolan), BIPNetCCBD (Bangladesh Indigenous People Network for Climate Change and Biodiversity), BCJF (Bangladesh Climate Change Journalist Forum) CCDF (Climate Change Development Forum), CLEAN (Coastal Livelihood and Environmental Action Network), CDP (Coastal Development Partnership), CSRL (Campaign for Sustainable Rural Livelihood), Counter Foto, EquityBD (Equity and Justice Working Group Bangladesh), FEJB (Forum for Environmental Journalist in Bangladesh), LEADERS, PRDI (Participatory Research and Development Initiative ), Rupanator and Uddayan Bangladesh.
The press conference was moderated by Masan Meshed of CLEAN, he also presented the key note paper. Welcome speech was given by Rafiqul Islam Khokan of RUPANTOR, other speakers are Sharmind Neelormi of CSRL and Dr Ahsan Uddin of CGC, Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of EquityBD, and Tanveer Mahmud of Oxfam. The press conference was preceded by a photo exhibition of Din M Shibly and release of set of campaign post cards on climate forced migrants which was inaugurated by Shiekh Abdul Quayum, Chairperson, Khulna Citizen Forum.
Sharman Neelormi of CSRL mentioned growing climate displacement in Bangladesh as forcasted it will be around 30 millions by the year 2050, she also mentioned that civil society doing campaign on this issue since 2007. Dr Ahsan Uddin said that high level carbon emitter ie developed countries should consider to take responsibility of climate forced migrants as they are responsible for all climate catastrohopes, he urged that our government need to prepare internal displacement policy in this regard. Rezaul Karim Chowdhury mentioned that government has taken an appropriate decision to have this inter state conference in Khulna with a field visit, as climate forced displacement are vivid in the locality. He also mentioned that our Prime Minister has taken right policy to take this issue in international forums especially in UN, as Bangladesh alone hardly be able to manage this displacement issue, but our respective ministries yet to place formal proposal in UN. Tanveer Mahmud of Oxfam said that may be the Nansen Initiative is a means to take forward the issue in international level. In the key note presentation on behalf of the group Hasan Mehedi elaborated the detail demands from civil societies.
English and Bengali position or demand papers are available in www.equitybd.org

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Index_1Dhaka, 21st March 2015. Today in seminar speakers opine that, the issue of climate induced displaced people deserve special policy options and support to ensure their relocation and rehabilitation. They were speaking in seminar titled `Rights of Climate Migrants: Pollicy Options at National and International Level’ held in the National Press Club, Dhaka.
The seminar presided over Dr. Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad, Chairman of the Palli Karma Shahyak Foundation (PKSF) was jointly organized by Bangladesh Poribesh Angolan (BAPA), Bangladesh Indigenous People Network for Climate Change and Bio Diversity (BIPNetCCBD ), Bangladesh Climate Change Journalist Forum (BCJF (),Coastal Development Partnership (CDP ), Campaign for Sustainable Rural Livelihood (CSRL ), Equity and Justice Working Group Bangladesh (EquityBD ), Forum for Environmental Journalist in Bangladesh (FEJB), Participatory Research and Development Initiative (PRDI ) and Oxfam. Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of EquityBD moderated the seminar while Sayed Aminul Haque of the same organization and Din M Shibley of Counter Photo presented the key notes. Among others Ziaul Haque Mukta, Regional Policy Coordinator, Oxfam, Qumrul Islam Chowdhury of FEJB, Tanvir Ahmed of Oxfam, Anowar Islam babu of Jatiyo Krishak Jote, Dr. Ahsan Uddin of Centre for Global Changes.
In his key note presentation Sayed Aminul Haque mentioned that, Bangladesh has been experiencing climate induced mass displacements. It is predicted that, due to sea level rise 17.5% of total landmass will be inundated and about of 31.5 million people will be forced to be displaced. It is also predicted that, due to river bank erosion displacement rate will be increased to 12.37% from 9.35 at present. The seasonal or temporary migrated population will be increased by from 10 % to 20%. Bangladesh itself hardly has sufficient ability to manage these climate induced displaced population, because of the high density of population already. The density of population currently is 964 per sq Km which is feared to be 1300 per Sq Km within 2050. The key note presentations recommended, an internal displacement policy in this regard, which will help Bangladesh to pursue relocations and rehabilitations policy measures in international and UN level.
Qumrul Islam Chowdhury said that Bangladesh climate negotiation team has to be prepared from now that how they will be influencing the Warsaw International Frame Work on Loss and Damage which will be finalized in UNFCCC Conference of Parties to be held in Paris at the of 2015. Ziaul Haque Mukta said, Bangladesh government has passed the Disaster Management Act which includes the issue of rehabilation on disaster related displacement, but there are hardly any details in rules. Prime Minister has been demanding separate international protocol on climate induced displaced but so far the foreign ministry is yet to submit any official submission on this regard in United Nations. Dr. Ahsan Uddin Ahmed said, climate induced displacement has been recognized and proposed to work in the Cancun adaptation framework, but Bangladesh have been failed to take any advantages. We have the Bangladesh Climate Change Strategic Action Plan, but there are gaps on what specific adaptation plan related to regarding climate induced displacement in national level.
Dr. Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad said, we had been able to play vital roles in the climate change negotiations during the previous five years. But from the last year we are a bit lagged behind in this regard. Concerned ministries and authorities and all should take initiative to revamp it. He mentioned that Bangladesh has succeded to include climate change as a goal and one indicator related to climate induced displacement in Post 2015 discourse and in Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). He said Nansen Initiative has given us an opportunity to pursue other states to on this agenda to place it UNFCCC Paris negotiations.

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index_photo_32Dhaka, 15th Nov 2014. Today civil society rights group as Peoples’ SAARC Bangladesh Process has demand to the South Asian leaders on the eve of 18th SAARC summit to be held in Kathmandu during 26th to 28th November, to draw a “Charter on free movement for climate induced migrant” under SAARC mechanism in a press conference as organized in national press club Dhaka. The People’s SAARC Bangladesh Group was represented by Bangladesh Poribesh Andoloan (BAPA), Bangladesh Dalit and Excluded Rights Movement (BDERM), Bangladesh Nair Progoti Sangha (BNPS), Equity and Justice Working Group Bangladesh (EquityBD), Institute of Environment and Development (IED), KHANI Bangladesh, Nagorik Uddoyoge (NU) and Shusanoer Jonny Procharavizan (SUPRO). The press conference was moderated by Mostafa Kamal Akhanda of EquityBD, Chaired by Dr Rashid E Mahbub as chair of the People’s SAARC Bangladesh Group, other speakers are Dr Abdul Matin of BAPA, Zakir Hossain of NU, Sahanaz Sumi of BNPS and Monju Rani Pramanik of SUPRO.

On behalf of the group key note statement presented by Monju Rani Pramanik of SUPRO, the group demanded free movement of climate induced migrants along with this the group has also placed following demands to the SAARC leaders in this relation, (i) to ensure effective cooperation in agriculture sector development as this is still lifeline for major part of people and their livelihood & economic opportunity, (ii) to develop common water management strategies especially connect with Bangladesh, India, Nepal and even China to promote agriculture system and hydro power development thereby benefiting the member countries with equity and justice, (iii) Giving emphasis and expedite the implementation of SAARC Dhaka & Thimphu declaration on climate change as this is serious issue for SAARC all member countries, (iv) to explore appropriate strategies in promoting cross boarder peace, security and employment thereby reducing militarization expenses and redirecting the investment to human development sectors.
Dr. Abdul Matin from BAPA demands to SAARC leaders to explore appropriate strategies to set-side the long pending water issues. He demands the connectivity with rivers that will facilitate the regional navigation among SAARC countries especially between Bangladesh and India. He also demands the govt. preparation on this SAARC summit and must make it to public. Zakir Hossain from NU said there are always dissimilarities between common people aspirations and what officials of SAARC process outline, such an aspiration gaps should be minimized.

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index_820Dhaka, 11th September 2014: Today five rights based civil society climate networks in Bangladesh urge the Prime Minister (PM) of Bangladesh to demand climate forced migrants’ rights and appropriate compensation under the cover of loss & damage discourse in upcoming Climate Change Summit called by UN Secretary General Mr. Ban Ki-Moon to be held on 23rd September in New York. They have also expressed concern on the current role of Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoE&F) and urged to be more pro active for participation of civil society in preparing PM speech in this regard.
The Press conference is jointly organized by BAPA (Bangladesh Poribesh Andolan), BIPnetCCBD (Bangldesh Indigenous Peoples Network for Climate Change and Bio-Diversity), CCDF (Climate Change Development Forum), CLEAN (Coastal Livelihood and Environmental Action Network), CSRL (Campaign for Sustainable Rural Livelihood) and EquityBD (Equity and Justice Working Group, Bangladesh).
Mr. Syed Aminul Haque, Secretariat Coordinator of EquityBD reads out the position paper in the press conference moderated by Mr. Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, the chief moderator of EquityBD. Mustafa Kamal Akanda of EquityBD gives the welcome address in the press conference. The invited speakers are Dr. Abdul Matin, the General Secretary of BAPA , Aminur Rasul Babul of Unnayan Dhara Trust and Hasan Mehedi of Humanity Watch/ CLEAN.
On behalf of the group, Aminul Haque urged five point demands should be addressed by our Prime Minister in the upcoming summit as follows; (1) Developed countries must admit historical responsibility and practically commit to reduce the GHG emissions; (2) Any agreement in respect of climate change must be a legally binding agreement especially for Rich countries in reducing GHG emissions; (3) UN must consider to prepare a separate protocol for climate forced migrants/ refugees so that developed countries must take responsibilities of them; (4) Allocate 50% of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) for adaptation and ensure easy access for the LDCs in it; and (5) Additional adaptation fund, there must be compensation to the countries within the discourse and mechanism related to loss and damage.
Dr. Abdul Matin of BAPA has expressed worries on the current role of MoE&F as it is less interested in participation of different stakeholders, that enriched Bangladesh’s position and leadership in past international level climate negotiations and global climate discourse. He also emphasized to consider saving natural resource while increasing national energy and power.
Aminur Rasul of Unnayan Dhara Trust said, the role of Bangladesh PM was always outspoken and pro people in such international forums and was also applauded by international communities. He also urged that PM should play the same role and must ask for compensation, climate displacement rights and fast track climate financing to the countries like Bangladesh.
Hasan Mehedi of CLEAN said in his speech, in 1971 about 9 million people were displaced and took shelter in India and they immediately asked for international aid and cooperation to face the pressure. Could we think about how Bangladesh will be able to rehabilitate about 30 million climates forced displaced people from the coastal area in future?
Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, the chief moderator of EquityBD said that, everyday displaced people from the coast and other areas are coming in large number to the cities and the capital already have more than 58 thousand people living in every sqkm. He said Bangladesh alone hardly able to manage the climate problem and it is also unfair as the problem is created by developed countries.

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IndexDhaka 19th July 2014. Today eighteen rights based civil society and coastal organizations organized a human chain and rally in front of the National Press Club and criticized government’s silence on the recent coastal catastrophes due to monsoon tidal flood and demanded immediate steps to protect coastal people and urged to think of the long term solutions. They also urged for Prime Minister attention in this regard.

Mostafa Kamal Akanda of EquityBD and COAST moderated the speech session after rally while the other speakers were AHM Bazlur Rahman of BNNRC, Aminur Rasul Babul of Unnayan Dhara Trust, Mohamed Yasin of Coastal Protection Movement, Subol Das of Bangladesh Bhumihin Somity, Zayed Iqbal Khan of Bangladesh Krishok Federation, and Sawkat Ali Tutul and Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of EquityBD and COAST.
Eighteen organization who have participated in the rally are Online Knowledge Society, United People Trust, Unnayan Dhara Trust, Coastal Protection Movement, EquityBD, Kishani Shova, Charfassion Shorif Para Ekota Songho, Coastal Development Partnership, Bodwip Forum, Bangladesh Krishok Federation, Bangladesh Bhumihin Somity, Bangladesh NGO Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC), CMAS, Sirajganj Flood Forum, Swapnapuri, Suraakha O Agragoti Foundation, Saikat Unnayan Sangsta, and Humanity Watch.

On behalf of the group Sawkat Ali Tutul of COAST Trust read out eight point of specific demands: (i) Emergency allocation for the fiscal year of 2014-15 for immediate maintenance of embankments, (ii) Develop fast and transparent tender process of Water Development Board (WDB) and reduce system loss, (iii) Deployment of army and use their expertise in critical places as necessary, (iv) Device transparent and people’s participation in the work of WDB, (v) Keeping information disclosure and complain response mechanism in the work of WDB in the local level, (vi) Establishing local level accountability of WDB and other embankment related bodies, and above all (vii) Considering the protection of coastal people and land as the priority issues in the National Climate Adaptation Plan.

AHM Bazlur Rahman of BNNRC said in his speech that government’s silence on this issue is a human right violation while coastal people has the right to live as the country’s citizen. He added, if we keep losing the coastal land this way the country’s food security will be threatened.

Aminur Rasul of Unnayan Dhara Trust said that the population density of Dhaka is already 54 thousand per sqkm and if coastal people losing their land into the river keep coming to the city for employment, it will cause a social disaster as the city will not be able to accommodate more people.

Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of COAST and EquityBD said that, government and donors has spent around taka 2 thousand crore in the name of climate trust and resilience funds, but money is hardly allocated or spent for protecting coastal lands and people. He demand immediate and long term steps in this regard.

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