In southeastern Bangladesh, thousands of Rohingya have been left homeless by a major fire in an overcrowded refugee camp. There are no reports of fatal casualties and the cause of the fire is not yet known. Images show that the devastation is gigantic. The fire is now under control.
The fire broke out around 2:45 p.m. local time yesterday in Cox’s Bazar, in the Myanmar border region. The fire quickly spread and destroyed many huts made of bamboo and tarpaulin. “About 2,000 shelters have been burned and some 12,000 displaced Myanmarese have been left homeless,” the Bangladeshi refugee official told AFP news agency.
At least 35 mosques and 21 educational centers went up in flames. Authorities at the camp are working closely with international and local aid organizations to provide food and temporary shelter to the Rohingya.
In recent decades, more than a million members of the oppressed Muslim Rohingya minority have fled Myanmar for neighboring Bangladesh. More than 700,000 of them have fled since 2017. The Myanmar army has been brutally driving members of the minority group out of the country since that year.
Cox’s Bazar fires are becoming more frequent. Between January 2021 and the end of December last year, according to the Bangladesh Ministry of Defense, 222 reports of fire incidents were made. There would have been 60 cases of arson.
Two years ago, in March 2021, at least 15 Rohingya were killed in a major fire in one of the camps in Cox’s Bazar. About 50,000 people were left homeless.
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