Bangladesh: Refugee Aid Discouraged

Source: NY Times.

By Reuteres

The government told three international aid agencies on Thursday not to help thousands of Rohingya Muslims who have been fleeing into Bangladesh to escape violence in neighboring Myanmar. The announcement, directed at the aid agencies Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders), Muslim Aid and Action Against Hunger, was part of an effort to discourage illegal migration from Myanmar. Longstanding tensions between ethnic Rakhine Buddhists and Muslim Rohingyas boiled over in Myanmar in June; the authorities say 77 people were killed and more than 100 wounded. In the wake of the violence, Human Rights Watch, based in New York, documented killings, rapes and arrests of Rohingyas by Myanmar’s security forces. At least 800,000 Rohingyas live in Myanmar, but they are not recognized as one of its ethnic groups. Bangladesh has sought to turn back Rohingyas from entering the country, and on Thursday the police arrested nine Rohingyas from a hotel in Bangladesh’s capital, Dhaka.

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