January 8, 2024
DHAKA – Nearly 7,000 Rohingyas have become homeless overnight after a fire blazed through a Rohingya camp in Cox’s Bazar in the early hours of today, the UN Refugee Agency has said.
The fire started around 1:00am in the morning and was brought under control by 4:00am.
Nearly 800 shelters are feared to have been destroyed in the first large fire to the Rohingya camp this year.
Additionally, around 93 shelters were partially damaged, and around 120 facilities, including learning centres, mosques, healthcare centres, latrines, bathing facilities, water points, and solar street lights, were destroyed or damaged by the inferno.
There have been no casualties reported so far, according to a statement from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Dhaka.
UNHCR and its humanitarian partners are scrambling to respond to the devastating fire that ravaged Camp 5, one of the 33 camps in Cox’s Bazar that house a total of about a million Rohingyas.
The Rohingyas displaced by the fire are temporarily taking shelter within the camp’s community centres, including in temporary communal shelters, and are being provided with emergency food assistance, including fortified biscuits and hot meals.
Bangladeshi authorities and humanitarian agencies are on site to assist people with emergency support, medical and psychological first aid, and by linking refugees with other relevant services as required.
In the aftermath of the fire, the government and the UNHCR, in coordination with IOM and other aid agencies, are supporting the Rohingyas who lost their shelters and belongings in the devastating blaze.
“The cause of the fire currently remains unknown, and we are assured by the government authorities that an investigation into the cause of the fire will be carried out,” the UN Refugee Agency has said.