Bangladesh backs India's stand on Rohingya issue: Foreign minister Haque

Katrina Barker
October 7, 2017

The influx has also put Bangladesh under vast strain, with the South Asian country already hosting at least 300,000 Rohingya refugees in squalid camps along its border with Myanmar before the latest surge in arrivals.

The conflict between the country's Buddhists and Muslims, which actually originates from the 19th century, intensified on August 25, 2017, when Muslim insurgents of Rohingya origin attacked security posts in Rakhine.

In a new report released Friday, Refugees International described the actions of the Myanmar military as "crimes against humanity".

She has said Myanmar will take back anyone verified as a refugee, but that could take months or years and is unlikely to solve the immediate crisis.

Prior to the Monday talks in Dhaka, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina had demanded an immediate end to violence and safe passage in Myanmar for the refugees to return to their ancestral homes.

A New Zealander overseeing United Nations efforts in Myanmar says a critical humanitarian crisis is unfolding.

The team had also urged government investment in Rakhine infrastructure such as roads, electricity, water and internet access.

The UN agencies earlier feared more than 14,100 Rohingya children were at risk of dying from malnutrition in wretched camps, as they were most vulnerable to the paucity of food, with 145,500 infants under five needing urgent intervention to stave off malnutrition.

"The access we have in northern Rakhine state is unacceptable", the head of the United Nations humanitarian office, Mark Lowcock, told reporters in Geneva.

Health experts have also voiced alarm that conditions in the grossly deficient camps are ripe for disease outbreaks such as cholera.

Addressing a joint press event, Tusk said the two sides wanted de-escalation of tensions and full adherence to global obligations in Myanmar and access of people to humanitarian aid.

Communities in Chittagong share close cultural, religious and linguistic ties with the Rohingya, and images on social media purportedly showing abuses against the Muslim minority in mainly Buddhist Myanmar have aroused strong sympathy in Bangladesh.

An EU delegation also joined the UN's whistle-stop trip to Rakhine, which took in Maungdaw and Rathedaung areas, explaining in a statement "this was not an investigation mission and could not be in the circumstances".

A previous controlled tour for diplomats scheduled for last week was abruptly canceled.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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