Calls grow to boost aid for Ro­hingya Mus­lims

Daily Sabah (Turkey) - - Internatio­nal -

A GLOBAL virtual in­ter­na­tional donor con­fer­ence to raise ur­gently needed hu­man­i­tar­ian aid for Ro­hingya refugees will be held on Oct. 22, co-hosted by the United States, the Euro­pean Union, the United King­dom and the United Na­tions refugee agency.

In a joint state­ment yes­ter­day, the co-hosts said less than half of the $1 bil­lion in aid sought by the United Na­tions in 2020 had been raised, and the cri­sis fac­ing the Ro­hingya peo­ple was be­ing ex­ac­er­bated by the COVID-19 pan­demic.

The con­fer­ence, which will be hosted from Wash­ing­ton, D.C., Geneva and Bangkok, aims to raise aid to help dis­placed Ro­hingya Mus­lims liv­ing both in and out­side of their na­tive Myan­mar.

“The Ro­hingya peo­ple have faced hor­rific bru­tal­ity and were forced to flee their homes in the worst cir­cum­stances imag­in­able,” Bri­tish For­eign Sec­re­tary Do­minic Raab said in the state­ment.

Hun­dreds of thou­sands of Ro­hingya refugees, mostly women and chil­dren, fled Myan­mar and crossed into Bangladesh af­ter Myan­mar forces launched a crack­down on the mi­nor­ity Mus­lim com­mu­nity in Au­gust 2017, push­ing the num­ber of per­se­cuted peo­ple in Bangladesh above 1.2 mil­lion. More than 1 mil­lion live in sprawl­ing camps in the south of Bangladesh, with as many as a dozen peo­ple shar­ing one shel­ter and scarce ac­cess to soap and wa­ter in some ar­eas. Cox’s Bazar, the world’s largest refugee set­tle­ment, houses 860,000 Ro­hingya in camps, while other coun­tries in South­east Asia host up to an ad­di­tional 150,000 Ro­hingya. An es­ti­mated 600,000 live in Myan­mar’s Rakhine State. The COVID-19 pan­demic has wors­ened liv­ing con­di­tions, made ac­cess to ser­vices even more chal­leng­ing, in­creased the risk of sex­ual and gen­der-based vi­o­lence and ex­ac­er­bated the risk of in­fec­tious diseases for dis­placed Ro­hingya, said the state­ment.

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