Asia Asia Pacific The Rohingya refugee crisis: the hardships the Rohingyas face

The Rohingya refugee crisis: the hardships the Rohingyas face

protest against living conditions in Bangladesh, some sail to Indonesia

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Bangladesh — Since 25 August 2017, more than 700,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh in search of aid and a safer place to reside.

The violence unleashed against the Rohingya in Myanmar has been decried as ethnic cleansing and genocide by United Nations (UN) agencies.

Villages were razed to the ground, families torn apart murdered, and women and girls alike were raped.

Fearing for their lives, those who managed to escape from the chaos sought refuge in the heart of Bangladesh.

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Today, close to 900,000 are crammed into 34 camps; the largest of which — the Kutupalong-Balukhali Expansion Site located in Cox’s Bazar— houses 600,000 refugees.

Living conditions for these refugees are deplorable: sanitation is poor and there is not enough food. The Rohingyas have little access to the internet and lack opportunities for formal education.

There were also reports of being shipped to places like Bhasan Char against their will. Bangladesh’s Foreign Minister Abdul Momen asserts that only those willing to leave were taken to the island to ease overcrowding in the camps.

However, several families and individuals that had to move say they had not volunteered or signed up to be sent to a new place. Aid workers also said that the refugees were pressured by government officials who either threatened or bribed them.

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On May 31, approximately 4,000 Rohingya refugees were reported to be “unruly” in a protest they staged against living conditions in Bhasan Char. The Bangladesh government insisted that the conditions there were vastly better than in Cox’s Bazar.

And on June 4, a boat carrying approximately 80 Rohingyas arrived at Pulau Idaman, a small island off the coast of Indonesia. One of the boat’s engines was faulty, leading the group to be stranded upon the island. Reports say they are healthy and locals have provided them with sustenance.Follow us on Social Media

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