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Refugees/Migrants - South-East Asia

The root causes of refugee flows continue to persist around the Bay of Bengal. Late August 2017 saw mass displacement after attacks on border guard posts in Myanmar's northern Rakhine State triggered a military response. More than 589,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh, putting a strain on aid resources. This is the largest mass refugee movement in the region in decades. The speed and scale of the influx has resulted in a critical humanitarian emergency. Most are now reliant on humanitarian assistance for food and other life-saving needs. Basic services that were available before the influx are under severe strain due to the massive increase in people in the area. In some refugee sites that have spontaneously emerged, there is no access to water and sanitation facilities, raising the risks of disease outbreaks. (ISCG, 19 Oct 2017)

Humanitarian agencies have launched an appeal for US$434 million to cover basic needs until February 2018. (IOM & ISCG, 3 Oct 2017)

This followed a smaller refugee influx in October 2016, when attacks on border guard posts — and the security operations that followed — led to an estimated 87,000 Rohingya fleeing to Bangladesh from Rakhine between 9 October 2016 and the end of July 2017. (IOM, 30 Jul 2017)

Before the recent waves of violence, there were already an estimated 300,000 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh since the 1990s. (IOM, 30 Jul 2017)

Within Rakhine state, some 120,607 people were already internally displaced due to previous outbreaks of violence in 2012. (Shelter Cluster, 31 Jul 2017)

In May 2015, more than 5,000 refugees and migrants from Bangladesh and Myanmar were abandoned by smugglers on the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea, triggering a regional crisis. Since then, regional maritime movements have declined due to intensified interdiction efforts, greater awareness of the risks, and the lack of legal status in destination countries. (UNHCR, 30 June 2016)

Approximately 12 of every 1,000 people who embark on mixed maritime movements from the Bay of Bengal do not survive the boat journey. This means as many as 2,000 Bangladeshis and Rohingya may have died before ever reaching land between 2012 and 2015 — adding up to a fatality rate higher than in the Mediterranean Sea. (UNHCR, 23 Feb 2016)

All Updates on Refugees/Migrants - South-East Asia

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23 Oct 2017 description

MSF International President Dr Joanne Liu attended a pledging conference for the Rohingya Refugee Crisis on Monday 23 October in Geneva. Below she describes her recent visit to Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, where a refugee crisis is unfolding after renewed violence in Rakhine state, Myanmar. “Almost 600,000 Rohingya refugees have sought safety in Bangladesh in the past two months. The numbers show no sign of slowing down – 40,000 people crossed the border from Myanmar in the past two weeks alone in an indication of continuing violence in Rakhine.

23 Oct 2017 description
report UN Children's Fund

NEW YORK/GENEVA/DHAKA, 23 October 2017 – Nearly two months since Rohingya families began fleeing en masse to Bangladesh, thousands of children and women are still without basic lifesaving services, UNICEF said today.

The warning comes as representatives of donor governments and humanitarian organizations meet in Geneva for a pledging conference aimed at drumming up resources for what remains a severely under-funded emergency.

23 Oct 2017 description
  • The total number of people who have fled into Bangladesh since 15 August stands at 603 000, including 66 000 during last week. UNHCR states it has registered more than 200 000 people in the first phase of a process leading to biometric registration and identification of people with special needs. According to UNHCR, this system would also be internationally acceptable for repatriation under their supervision. The Government of Bangladesh is proceeding to a parallel biometric registration system, claiming to have registered 224 000 people so far.

23 Oct 2017 description

Media release, 23.10.2017 The international community came together in Geneva today to mobilise funds for the Rohingya. Since August this year, more than half a million people have been forced to flee violence in Myanmar and seek refuge in Bangladesh. Given the extent of this humanitarian crisis, Switzerland has decided to increase its financial contribution to CHF 8 million. Switzerland reiterates its call upon the government of Myanmar to respect international law and, in particular, to protect human rights and also calls for the perpetrators of violations to be brought to justice.

23 Oct 2017 description

The European Union today co-hosted in Geneva a 'Pledging Conference on the Rohingya Refugee Crisis'. The Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides has announced the EU's contribution of an additional €30 million for the Rohingya communities in Bangladesh.

23 Oct 2017 description

OVERVIEW

As of 21 Oct 2017, at least 815,000 Rohingyas are estimated to be sheltering in Bangladesh, having fled violence and persecution in Myanmar. Violence which began on 25 August has triggered a massive and swift refugee influx across the border - an estimated 603,000 people have arrived. These refugees have joined some 213,000 people who were already in Bangladesh following earlier waves of displacement. The Rohingya population in Cox’s Bazar is highly vulnerable, many having experienced severe trauma, and are now living in extremely difficult conditions.

23 Oct 2017 description

Excellencies, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen,

Since 25 August, nearly 600,000 refugees have sought safety in Bangladesh, fleeing violence, serious human rights violations and persecution in Myanmar’s Rakhine State.

Nearly 60 per cent of them are children. Thank you for coming today in solidarity with them, with the Bangladeshi Government and with the communities that are so generously hosting them.

I would like especially to thank our hosts, the European Union and Kuwait, as well as my co-panellists.

23 Oct 2017 description
report Oxfam

More than 300,000 women and girls who have fled rape and violence are not getting the protection and help they need because of lack of funds, Oxfam said ahead of a donor conference in Geneva today.

23 Oct 2017 description

SITUATION OVERVIEW

Since 25 August 2017, an estimated 589,000 Rohingya have crossed into Bangladesh fleeing violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine State, increasing the total Rohingya population in Cox’s Bazar to 802,000. New arrivals are living in spontaneous settlements with increasing need of humanitarian assistance, including shelter, food, clean water, and sanitation. Poor road networks and insufficient drainage in the displacement sites make it difficult to reach new arrivals with urgent support.

23 Oct 2017 description
report Direct Relief

By Joe Harrison, Program Manager, Asia/Middle East on October 20, 2017

Since Aug. 25, over half a million Rohingya refugees have fled Myanmar’s Rakhine State for an area just slightly south of Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, and those who made it across the border to Bangladesh are in desperate need of medical care.

23 Oct 2017 description

Situation Overview

Since the start of violence in Rakhine State, over half a million (582,140) people have fled Myanmar and arrived in Cox’s Bazar, southern Bangladesh, according to the estimate of the Inter Sector Coordination Group (ISCG) hosted by the UN’s Migration Agency (IOM). Numbers spiked again in the past week when over 18,000 Rohing-ya crossed into Bangladesh, fleeing what has been described as ‘ethnic cleansing’.

23 Oct 2017 description

Refugees and asylum seekers held at Australia's immigration detention centre on Papua New Guinea's Manus Island have been told water, food and power will be cut at the end of the month.

Read more on Radio New Zealand International

23 Oct 2017 description

Verified Population - September 2017

9,503

Populaion profile

Gender

Female 50% Male 50%

Age

18 years and above: 53%

5-17 years: 33%

Below 5 years: 14%

Ethnicity

Karen 99% Other 1%

Religion

Christian 65% Buddhist 32% Animist 2% Other 1%

Background

23 Oct 2017 description

Verified Population - September 2017

10,541

Populaion profile

Gender

Female 50% Male 50%

Age

18 years and above: 53%

5-17 years: 34%

Below 5 years: 13%

Ethnicity

Karen 99% Other 1%

Religion

Christian 73% Buddhist 23% Animist 2% Other 2%

Background

23 Oct 2017 description

Verified Population - September 2017

10,680

Populaion profile

Gender

Female 51% Male 49%

Age

18 years and above: 57%

5-17 years: 32%

Below 5 years: 11%

Ethnicity

Karen 86% Burman 10% Other 4%

Religion

Christian 49% Buddhist 43% Muslim 8%

Background

23 Oct 2017 description

Verified Population - September 2017

6,167

Populaion profile

Gender

Female 52% Male 48%

Age

18 years and above: 54%

5-17 years: 34%

Below 5 years: 12%

Ethnicity

Karen 99% Burman 1%

Religion

Christian 91% Buddhist 9%

Background

23 Oct 2017 description

ROME – As leaders gather for the Pledging Conference for the Rohingya Crisis in Geneva tomorrow, the Executive Director of the United Nations World Food Programme, David Beasley, called for access and resources to alleviate the suffering of more than half a million people. WFP has provided food to the 580,000 people who have flooded out of Myanmar since August 25.

23 Oct 2017 description

Verified Population - September 2017

11,592

Populaion profile

Gender

Female 50% Male 50%

Age

18 years and above: 59%

5-17 years: 31%

Below 5 years: 10%

Ethnicity

Karen 86% Burman 8% Mon 2% Other 4%

Religion

Christian 36% Buddhist 44% Muslim 20%

Governance