Dhaka: At least 125 Bangladeshi trafficking victims who were rescued from the Bay of Bengal were brought back home from Myanmar on Tuesday. Myanmar Navy reportedly rescued some 935 fortune seekers on May 21 and 29 from their territorial waters and claimed that all of them were from Bangladesh, Xinhua reported. In collaboration with the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), some 501 Bangladeshis have so far been repatriated from Myanmar in four phases since June.
According to sources, some 325 Bangladeshis are still on the waiting list to return home from Myanmar. Earlier, IOM National Program Officer Asif Munier said they have completed all formalities for the repatriation. He added that one or two more people could be included in the list to be handed over to the representatives during the flag meeting. The list includes 20 to 25 adolescents, the IOM official said adding that they would provide humanitarian help for them until they reach home.
United Nations World Food Programme in Bangladesh said it welcomed a new contribution of $50,000 from Vietnam to support operations in Coxs Bazar – home to nearly one million Rohingya Muslim refugees from Myanmar.
“We are very grateful to Vietnam for stepping up to assist people living in Cox’s Bazar refugee camps,” said Richard Ragan, WFP Representative and Country Director, in a statement.
“This remains a serious humanitarian emergency, and continued support from the international community is vital if we are to keep providing the humanitarian assistance that is so badly needed.”
Vietnam’s new aid was announced by the Special Envoy of Prime Minister, Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs, Nguyen Quoc Dzung, during a visit to Bangladesh, according to WPF.
“Although this is a modest contribution, we are hopeful that our support will advance the response to this crisis situation,” he said.
Vietnam joins dozens of other states who have pledged their support to the Cox’s Bazar response since the August 2017 refugee influx, said WFP, which provides food assistance to more than 870,000 refugees per month at the sprawling refugee settlement.
The UN agency also provides nutritional and livelihood support to the host community at Cox’s Bazaar, with the aim of helping the most vulnerable, WFP said.
Sustained aid from nations is necessary to continue WFP operations in Bangladesh, the UN agency warned.
Over 750,000 Rohingya refugees have fled to Cox’s Bazar since August 2017 to escape persecution and violence by Myanmar’s military in Northern Rakhine State. Thousands of other Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh during previous periods of repression in Myanmar. (IANS)