Turkey to help boost tourism in Bangladesh

Turkey will help improve the tourism sector in Bangladesh, the Turkish tourism minister said Monday.

Numan Kurtulmus met Bangladeshi Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Shajahan Kamal in capital Dhaka ahead of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) tourism ministers' meeting.

Kurtulmus told the meeting that the two countries will ink a cooperation agreement in the tourism sector.

He said Turkey will help improve tourism in Bangladesh through various education programs and support the country in developing its cultural heritage.

Kurtulmus invited his counterpart for the third edition of UNWTO/UNESCO World Conference on Tourism and Culture to be held in Istanbul this year.

He also praised the Bangladeshi government's welcoming stance on Rohingya Muslims, who are currently taking refuge in the country.

Kamal thanked Turkey for its humanitarian efforts for Rohingya refugees.

More than 650,000 refugees, mostly children and women, have fled Myanmar since Aug. 25, 2017, when Myanmar forces launched a crackdown on the minority Muslim community, according to the UN.

At least 9,000 Rohingya were killed in Rakhine state from Aug. 25 to Sept. 24, according to Doctors Without Borders.

In a report published on Dec. 12, 2017, the global humanitarian organization said the deaths of 71.7 percent or 6,700 Rohingya were caused by violence. They include 730 children below the age of 5.

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.