Further disasters could hit the persecuted Rohingya in refugee camps in Bangladesh!
Roughly 700,000 members of the Rohingya Muslim minority fled their homes for neighbouring Bangladesh after violent attacks by the Burmese military in August 2017. A return to Myanmar is unthinkable at present. Besides, the heavy summer monsoon rains are imminent, and could cause flooding and landslides in the refugee camps. Since September 2017, HEKS/EPER has been providing emergency aid to the Jamtoli refugee camp, in cooperation with its partner organization Christian Aid (CA). The project is also being supported by Swiss Solidarity.
It is already raining in Bangladesh, but the heavy summer monsoon rains are yet to come. In July alone, the Rohingya can expect their overcrowded refugee camps to receive as much rainfall as does Switzerland in an entire year. Made of plastic sheeting, many of the huts will not be able to keep the refugees dry. «Because huts have been built on most of the land area, the ground will be unable to absorb the large quantities of water. The unpaved footpaths will turn into rivers that will erode the terraced hillsides and at worst cause landslides», says Sebastien Zug, the HEKS officer responsible for the emergency aid project at the Jamtoli refugee camp.