Massive fire hits Rohingya refugee camp in Bangladesh | Human rights news

Videos posted on social media show smoke rising from Balukhali Camp 1 in Cox’s Bazar.

A massive fire swept through a Rohingya refugee camp in southern Bangladesh, officials and witnesses said, destroying hundreds of barracks.

Videos posted to social media on Monday showed clouds of smoke rising from Balukhali Camp 1 in Cox’s Bazar.

“We received the fire report and responded to the incident. We are trying to control the fire, ”Anadolu Mohammad Shamsud Douza, additional commissioner of the Refugee Relief and Repatriation Commission, told the news agency.

Witnesses at Cox’s Bazar camp said the blaze started around 3:30 p.m. local time (10:30 GMT) and had not yet been brought under control.

“More than 700 tents were destroyed as the fire spiraled out of control,” Rohingya community leader Anadolu Mayyu Khan told Anadolu.

Muhammad Ayyub, another representative of the Rohingya, told Anadolu by telephone that at least one 19-year-old woman and two children, aged six and nine, were reportedly killed and several others are missing.

In January, a fire swept away another Rohingya refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar which has left thousands homeless.

According to the United Nations refugee agency, UNHCR, more than 550 shelters – which house at least 3,500 people – were totally or partially destroyed in the fire at Nayapara camp, along with 150 stores and a facility belonging to them. to a non-profit organization.

In recent weeks, the Bangladeshi government has displaced several thousand Rohingya to an isolated island despite protests from human rights groups who say some of the relocations have been forced, claims denied by authorities.

Over a million Rohingya live in mainland camps in southern Bangladesh, the vast majority having fled Myanmar in 2017 as part of a military crackdown which the UN says was carried out with genocidal intent – accusations which Myanmar denies.

More soon.

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