Two weeks since the latest influx of Rohingya refugees from Myanmar that began on August 25, over 164,000 people have crossed from Rakhine State to areas around Cox’s Bazar, 12,000 people every day on an average.
The majority of individuals who have crossed into Bangladesh have set up shelters in existing settlements and formal refugee camps, said the UN office in Dhaka.
New rudimentary settlements are also being spontaneously created. However, there are limited or no services available at these sites, and the majority of people are compelled to stay in the open air.
The UN Resident Coordinator in Bangladesh, Robert Watkins, said, “People have walked for upto six days before crossing into Bangladesh and are suffering hunger and exhaustion, and are in urgent need of food, water, shelter and health services.”
UN agencies and NGOs on the ground in Cox’s Bazar are supporting the government to meet the needs of the new arrivals.
UN agencies in Cox’s Bazar are providing emergency shelter, food, clean water, and nutritional support.
To enhance access to clean water and sanitation facilities, agencies are quickly installing new tubewells and latrines.
With reports of landmine explosions on the Myanmar side of the border, people are also making the journey by boat, with 300 boats reportedly arriving on one day alone.
Agencies on the ground have reported that a number of people are also arriving with gunshot wounds and require urgent medical attention, the UN office said.
People are also in need of psychosocial support to help them cope with the extreme trauma they have experienced.
In response to the health need of the new arrivals, mobile medical teams are providing emergency health services, and health facilities are working to scale up services to meet increased needs due to the recent influx.
Child-friendly spaces have also been established to provide vulnerable children with appropriate psychosocial support..