March 22, 2023

The fireplace hit Balukhali camp, one of many 32 camps in Cox’s Bazar district the place greater than 1.2 million folks reside.

An enormous fireplace raced by a crammed refugee camp for Rohingya Muslims in southern Bangladesh, leaving hundreds homeless, a hearth official and the United Nations stated.

The blaze hit Camp 11 in Cox’s Bazar, a border district the place greater than 1,000,000 Rohingya refugees reside, with most having fled a military-led crackdown in Myanmar in 2017.

“We at present do not have an estimate for damages however there aren’t any stories of casualties,” Rafiqul Islam, extra police superintendent at Cox’s Bazar, instructed Reuters information company.

Islam added that the blaze was below management and senior officers from the fireplace, police and refugee aid departments had been current on the web site.

The UNHCR in Bangladesh stated in a tweet that Rohingya refugee volunteers had been responding to the fireplace with the company and its companions offering assist. It stated a number of shelters and services had been destroyed because of the fires.

Reporting from Dhaka, Al Jazeera’s Tanvir Chowdhury stated Balukhali Camp is without doubt one of the 32 camps in Cox’s Bazar, the place greater than 1.2 million persons are residing.

“The fireplace remains to be on and appears to have been brought on by a cooking cylinder. A lot of the houses are manufactured from bamboo so the fireplace spreads rapidly,” stated Chowdhury.

He defined that the area the place the fireplace broke out is sort of hilly, making it troublesome for rescue groups to succeed in it and for households to flee.

“The well being services [in the area] are very rudimentary to have a quick response. There are plenty of discipline hospitals however not sufficient to reply to 1.2 million folks,” he added.

A couple of million Rohingya refugees have fled to Bangladesh from Myanmar over a number of many years, together with about 740,000 who crossed the border beginning in August 2017, when the Myanmar navy launched a brutal crackdown.

Situations in Myanmar have worsened since a navy takeover in 2021, and makes an attempt to ship them again have failed.

Final yr, the US stated the oppression of Rohingya in Myanmar quantities to genocide after US authorities confirmed accounts of mass atrocities in opposition to civilians by the navy in a scientific marketing campaign in opposition to the ethnic minority.

Principally Muslim Rohingya face widespread discrimination in Buddhist-majority Myanmar, the place most are denied citizenship and lots of different rights.

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