On Monday 22 March, a deadly fire tore through the refugee camp in Bangladesh, home to over a million Rohingya Muslims fleeing the genocide in Myanmar.
At least 15 people were confirmed dead after the blaze ripped through the sprawling camp razing tents to the ground and leaving behind a desolate, charred landscape more redolent of the aftermath of a volcanic eruption. More than 10,000 homes have been destroyed and 80,000 people are displaced. Thousands of children and elderly are missing. Already destitute, tens of thousands residents have now lost what little they had left.
Described by the UN as the most persecuted people in the world, the Rohingyas now face a race against time to rebuild their makeshift homes ahead of the monsoon season between June and October, when cyclones and heavy rains often lead to floods.
The world seems to have largely forgotten the Rohingya and international support for them has fallen woefully behind what is required. The UNHCR’s 2021 appeal has reached only 16% of its nearly $300m (£218m)target.
It is incumbent on the Ummah to help the Rohingya in their time of need. To this end, IHRC is launching an urgent appeal to raise funds to help the refugees. Working with local partners in Bangladesh, we will be providing them with emergency food aid. Donors are encouraged to contribute towards food packs that will feed whole families.
The cost per pack is £20 and will feed a family of 3-6 people for between 7-10 days. The food packs will also ease the burden on relatives and friends who themselves lack resources but are sheltering the homeless.
And with Ramadan drawing near your generosity will ensure that families will be able to fast in the knowledge that they will have a meal waiting for them when the day is over.
To find out more about the research we have done on the Rohingya, please read IHRC’s report. It charges Myanmar with genocide against Rohingya. Based on first-hand accounts of the atrocities suffered by the Rohingya in and around 25 August 2017, the report presents a compelling case for bringing Myanmar officials before the International war Crimes Tribunal in the Hague. Click here to read the report.