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NEW YORK, Nov 16 2020 (IPS) – “This is a crisis without a quick fix that could take years to resolve unless there are concerted efforts to address its root causes”, says Manuel Fontaine, UNICEF Director of Emergency Programmes.

The Rohingya refugee crisis is among the largest and fastest-growing displacement of people in recent history. Since August 2017, close to a million Rohingya refugees have fled Myanmar and taken refuge in Bangladesh. The Rohingyas are “one of, if not the most discriminated people in the world” said the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

Flooding into Cox’s Bazar district in Bangladesh, the Rohingya refugees joined more than 200,000 of others who had fled years before. Today, about 860,000 stateless Rohingya refugees live in the world’s largest and most densely populated refugee camp, Kutupalong. Of the near one million refugees that Bangladesh is currently hosting, about half of them are children.

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A stateless Muslim minority in Myanmar, the Rohingyas represents the largest percentage of Muslims in that country, with the majority living in the Rakhine region. Crisis

Shipra Das (40), one of the founding members and General Secretary of Bidyanondo Foundation said to IPS: “The Rohingya camp is the biggest refugee camp in the world. Approximately 1.1 million people live here. Among them, more than 10.000 women are pregnant – the majority of them being rape victims. These women give birth in the poverty-stricken refugee settlements in Bangladesh.” Das informed IPS that they have been working on empowering women with knowledge and expertise and added “we have tried to bridge the gap in gender inequality, lessen gender-based violence, and ease the pre-existing mindset. The journey was not easy and help was not accepted by them easily.”

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