The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said today that the exodus of Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar to Bangladesh is “the most urgent refugee emergency in the world” right now.
The UN and others have described the violence as ethnic cleansing. Rohingya have faced persecution and discrimination in majority-Buddhist Myanmar for decades and are denied citizenship, even though many families have lived there for generations.
Filipo Grandi that the needs of the more than 430,000 people who have fled terrible violence in Myanmar over the last month are enormous and that the international community must step up financial and material aid to Bangladesh if the South Asian nation is to be able to help the refugees.
Grandi toured Cox’s Bazar city that has massive refugee camps that have sprung up to accommodate the new refugee.
The government says there is no such ethnicity as Rohingya and that they are Bengalis who illegally migrated to Myanmar from Bangladesh.
Grandi said he was thankful that Bangladesh’s government had kept its borders open for the terrified Rohingya “in a world that has often turned hostile to refugees.”