There is growing fear of the rapid spread of coronavirus in Bangladesh’s crammed refugee camps housing more than one million Rohingya after three cases were confirmed recently.
“The lethal virus has finally started infecting the overcrowded Rohingya camps. It’s an alarming situation for us,” said Mahbubur Rahman, a government civil surgeon in Cox’s Bazar, a coastal district where the camps are located.
Bangladeshi authorities have stepped up ongoing restrictions in the sprawling camps, scaling down the presence of aid organizations while the local administration declared a strict ban on the presence of any outsiders at camps.
In early May, over 300 Rohingya were moved to a remote and uninhabited islet citing risks of coronavirus contamination in the camps.
“Since the very beginning of the first case we have been taking all precautionary measures, but ultimately one Rohingya has been reported positive for COVID-19 along with another host community member who worked at a grocery shop inside the camps,” Rahman told Anadolu Agency.
The infected local resident has been isolated at his house near the Rohingya camps.
Beefed up preventive measures
All tents of the camp’s block where the infected Rohingya was living have been locked down, Rahman added. “All of his family members have been kept in institutional quarantine.”
Rohingya refugee settlements are divided into 34 camps and each camp comprises many blocks.
“We are also working to trace out the recent contacts of the infected Rohingya to put them in quarantine,” the surgeon said.
Regarding the additional two infections on Friday, he added they have also been shifted instantly to the isolation center inside camps.
He added there is arrangement to institutionally isolate 100 people inside camps that can be extended to 300 on emergency need.
Sep 23, 2020The UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, Thomas Andrews, has questioned Myanmar for not fulfilling its commitment over Rohingya repatriation. “Where is justice for those stranded in refugee camps in Bangladesh while facilities are constructed on their homeland for the same military that stands accused at the International Court of […]
Sep 01, 2020