Bangladeshi Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali on Monday said that Myanmar had proposed to take back the thousands of Rohingyas who fled to Bangladesh after violence broke out in Rakhine state, AFP reported.

Mahmood held talks with Kyaw Tint Swe, a representative of Myanmar’s de-facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s. “The talks were held in a friendly atmosphere, and Myanmar has made a proposal to take back the Rohingya refugees,” Mahmood said after the meeting in Dhaka. “The two sides have agreed to a proposal to set up a joint working group to coordinate the repatriation process.”

On Monday, Myanmar authorities took foreign diplomats and United Nations representatives on a tour of Rakhine, AP reported. Three groups of diplomats were taken to various places in the conflict-torn state.

More than seven lakh Rohingya refugees are believed to be in Bangladesh, and 5.07 lakh of them arrived since August 25, according to the United Nations, which had referred to the situation as an “ethnic cleansing”. Over the past few months, around 120 Rohingya refugees, many of them children, drowned while trying to reach Bangladesh in small fishing boats.

Rohingyas have been denied citizenship in Myanmar and are classified as illegal immigrants. The community has been subjected to violence by the Buddhist majority and the Army in Myanmar. Nobel Peace laureate Suu Kyi has been facing criticism from world leaders, and the crisis has threatened to jeopardise Myanmar’s US-aided shift toward democracy after five decades of military rule.