Senin, 22 Maret 2021

Rohingya refugee camp homes destroyed by Bangladesh fire, emergency services rescue residents - ABC News

A large fire has swept through a Rohingya refugee camp in southern Bangladesh, destroying thousands of homes.

Local officials said emergency services were working with volunteers from nearby camps to quell the blaze and help local residents.

The fire broke out in the late afternoon and spread to at least four blocks of the Balukhali camp in Cox's Bazar district, according to Mohammad Shamsud Douza, the deputy Bangladesh government official in charge of refugees.

Rohingya refugees in the camps said several people had died, but neither authorities nor UN officials confirmed there were any deaths.


"Fire services, rescue and response teams and volunteers are at the scene to try to control the fire and prevent it spreading further," said Louise Donovan, spokesperson for UN refugee agency UNHCR in Cox's Bazar, where more than one million refugees live in ramshackle huts.

"Humanitarian partners have mobilised hundreds of volunteers from nearby camps to support the efforts, as well as fire safety vehicles and equipment.

"So far, the fire has affected shelters, health centres, distribution points and other facilities."

Thick smoke billows into the air from a township with people dispersed on sandy bank.
The fire broke out at Balukhali refugee camp in Bangladesh.(



Rohingya refugees in the camps said many houses were destroyed.

"Thousands of huts were totally burnt down," Mohammed Nowkhim, a Rohingya leader in camps in Cox's Bazar.

"The fire spread so quickly that before we understood what happened, it caught our house … people were screaming and running here and there," said Tayeba Begum, a Save the Children volunteer.

A burnt out shell of a building and charred trees as smoke rises from the ground.
Local officials said at least four blocks of Balukhali refugee camp were destroyed by the fire.(



The risk of fire in the densely populated camps is high, and Monday's blaze was the largest yet, said Onno Van Manen, Country Director of Save the Children in Bangladesh.

"It is another devastating blow to the Rohingya refugees who live here. Just a couple of days ago we lost one of our health facilities in another fire," he said.

More than one million Rohingya live in the mainland camps in southern Bangladesh, the vast majority having fled Myanmar in 2017 from a military-led crackdown that UN investigators said was executed with "genocidal intent", charges Myanmar denies. 

Another large fire tore through the camp in January, destroying homes but causing no casualties.


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2021-03-22 16:08:05Z

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