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Rohingya: the world’s fastest growing refugee crisis

Malteser International, the Order of Malta’s worldwide relief agency, on the ground in Bangladesh

Cologne, 28 August 2018

Support for a tiny Rohingya refugee

Support for a tiny Rohingya refugeeRajuma’s village was utterly destroyed. Harrowing reports from survivors reveal how families were forcefully separated, husbands from wives, children from parents. They tell of brutal executions of men and children – some burnt alive, others shot dead. Many women, including young girls, were raped several times, and then killed.

On arrival in Bangladesh, Rajuma was treated for severe burns. Her injuries took three months to heal, and left deep scars on her body. The brutal loss of her family leaves indelible marks on her soul. She escaped with her life, but remains severely traumatised.

Rohingya family in refugee camp, Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh

Rohingya family in refugee camp, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh
Malteser International, the Order of Malta’s worldwide relief agency (HQ in Cologne), immediately responded to the unprecedented influx of Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. Its teams are currently operating three health stations in the refugee camps in Cox’s Bazar, providing basic medical care, therapeutic feeding for malnourished children and psychosocial support as well as hygiene and sanitation training. Over 60,000 patients have been treated with life-saving aid since the beginning of interventions. 

August 25 marked the first anniversary of the beginning of the attacks on the Rohingya and the ensuing crisis, with the refugee camps are still desperately overcrowded and the refugee population almost entirely reliant on external aid. Conditions in the camps have been worsened by the monsoon season. The United Nations yesterday declared that Myanmar military figures must be investigated for genocide in Rakhine state.

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The mission of the Order of Malta is inspired by its tradition of ‘Tuitio Fidei et Obsequium Pauperum', to assist the poor and the sick, and bear witness to the Christian faith.


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