The Isle of Man has provided £100,000 towards humanitarian efforts on the border of Bangladesh and Myanmar, where up to 1.4 million people are in acute need.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has described the situation as ‘catastrophic’, adding: ‘It has spiralled into the world’s fastest developing refugee emergency, a humanitarian and human rights nightmare.’
The outbreak of violence in Rakhine State in Myanmar in late August follows decades of persecution of the Rohingya people. It has led to a mass population movement into the neighbouring Cox’s Bazar district in Bangladesh, already one of the poorest and most overpopulated districts in the country.
The Government of Bangladesh has become overwhelmed by the demand, with as many as 1.4 million people now in immediate need of shelter, medical attention, water and food. Many are at risk of disease epidemics, flooding, conflict and gender-based violence.
Saleh Saeed OBE, Chief Executive of the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), said: ‘People are arriving exhausted and traumatised into already overcrowded camps in Bangladesh. This is one of the fastest movements of people we have seen in recent decades. Without urgent support, the risk of disease and further misery is alarmingly high.’
Chief Minister Howard Quayle MHK commented: ‘The situation has deteriorated rapidly and the DEC and its agencies have been very effective in launching a response. These charities urgently need funding to deliver emergency aid and our contribution will add to those of other nations to help thousands of vulnerable people.’