Ahead of an official visit to Dhaka, Turkey's prime minister Binali Yildirim praised the Bangladeshi government for helping the Muslim Rohingya.

Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim boards the plane as he departs from the capital Ankara for Dhaka, Bangladesh, for an official visit, December 18, 2017.
Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim boards the plane as he departs from the capital Ankara for Dhaka, Bangladesh, for an official visit, December 18, 2017. ( AA )

Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim on Monday praised Bangladesh's government for its efforts in "lending a hand" to Rohingya Muslims.

Yildirim as speaking ahead of his official visit to Bangladesh, which aims to address regional issues such as the Rohingya crisis and to enhance relations between the two nations.

The prime minister is scheduled to meet Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina and President Abdul Hamid in the capital Dhaka as part of the official visit.

"Hundreds of thousands of Myanmar's Rohingya Muslims were forced to seek refuge in Bangladesh after the violence and massacres they were subjected to. I once more applaud the Bangladeshi government for not leaving them alone," he said.

He also praised the long-standing relations between the two countries and said that enhancing economic cooperation was on the agenda.

"We will have the opportunity to underline once again that we are ready to make all means of contributions at the highest level in these difficult times Bangladesh is going through," he said.

Turkey's prime minister will also visit Cox's Bazar in southeastern Bangladesh, an area hosting hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees who fled a military crackdown in neighbouring Myanmar.

Rohingya refugee crisis 

Since August 25, over 600,000 Rohingya Muslims have crossed from Myanmar's western Rakhine state into Bangladesh, according to the UN.

Yildirim will meet refugees in camps on the Bangladeshi side of the border.

He will be briefed on the refugee situation and humanitarian aid efforts being undertaken in the region by international groups, including the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA), Turkish Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD), and Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate.

The refugees are fleeing a military operation in which Myanmar security forces and Buddhist mobs have killed men, women and children, looted homes and torched villages in Rakhine, in what the UN has called ethnic cleansing.

Turkey has been at the forefront of providing aid to Rohingya refugees and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has raised the issue at the UN.

The UN has documented mass gang rapes, killings – including of infants and young children – brutal beatings, and disappearances committed by security personnel. 

In a report, UN investigators said such violations may have constituted crimes against humanity.

Source: AA