Rohingya refugee camp gutted in Rakhine State fire

In Remembrances of Rohingyas of 2016 Fire in IDP Camp Sittwe, Arakan State We post again for Documentation


Rohingya refugee camp gutted in Rakhine State fire

Fire destroys shelters of about 2,000 Rohingya Muslims refugees in camp in the western Rakhine State of Myanmar.

4 MAY 2016

Debris after fire destroyed shelters at a camp for internally displaced Rohingya Muslims in the western Rakhine State near Sittwe, Myanmar. SOE ZEYA TUN/REUTERS

A fire broke out on Tuesday in a camp for internally displaced Muslims in Myanmar’s Rakhine State, destroying shelters where about 2,000 people had lived. At least 14 people were injured, the United Nations said.

Camps in the area largely house members of the marginalised Rohingya Muslim minority, who were displaced by fighting between Buddhists and Muslims in 2012.

The fire at the Baw Du Pha 2 camp near the state capital of Sittwe started in the morning.”Based on information currently available, at least 14 people were injured by the fire. There are reports of fatalities but this has not been verified,” the UN said.

Boys search for useful items among the ashes of burned-out houses. SOE ZEYA TUN/REUTERS

The fire destroyed about 44 “long houses” and damaged up to nine, affecting 440 households, it said.

Myanmar’s Rohingya population is stateless and thousands of them have fled persecution and poverty, often by boat to other parts of Southeast Asia.

Some 125,000 Rohingya remain displaced and face severe travel restrictions while living in camps.

Faced with apartheid-like restrictions that limit access to jobs, education and healthcare, thousands have braved perilous boat journeys in search of better lives in Malaysia and Indonesia.

The charred remains of wooden shelters and twisted metal roofs are visible through a thick haze of smoke. SOE ZEYA TUN/REUTERS

Rakhine’s Rohingya are labelled ‘Bengali’ by hardline Buddhists and many government officials, who brand them illegal immigrants from Bangladesh even though many can trace their ancestry back generations. SOE ZEYA TUN / REUTERS

People stand in the debris after fire destroyed shelters at the camp for internally displaced Rohingya Muslims. SOE ZEYA/REUTERS

Authorities said a cooking stove had caused the blaze at the Baw Du Pha camp near the state capital Sittwe, with strong winds spreading flames from house to house in the tinder-dry area. SOE ZEYA TUN/REUTERS

A woman walks among the debris from the camp’s burned-out buildings. SOE ZEYA TUN/REUTERS

Some 140,000 people, mainly Rohingya, have been trapped in grim displacement camps since they were driven from their homes by waves of violence between Buddhists and minority Muslims four years ago. SOE ZEYA TUN – REUTERS

The conflict left Rakhine state deeply scarred, effectively segregating communities on religious grounds
and depressing the local economy. SOE ZEYA TUN/REUTERS

Last month at least 20 Muslims from a Rakhine displacement camp drowned when their boat capsized in choppy waters while travelling to a market in Sittwe. SOE ZEYA TUN/REUTERS

Rohingya, Myanmar, Asia Pacific

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Posted in International, Media, Myanmar, Publication, Report, Rohingya

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