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Rohingya : Bangladesh Medics struggle to cope with influx

Dr Mohammad Hossain has already seen more than 50 injured Rohingya Muslims in the last two hours. Another 40 are waiting their turn at a nearby mosque in Daylpara village on the banks of the river Naf that separates Bangladesh from Myanmar.

Having navigated several kilometers of muddy tracks, hillocks, and swamp-like areas bare-foot, thousands of Rohingya are finally getting the medical attention they urgently need.

Dr Hossain, who leads a team of 32 people, is one of the few medics that has come forward to help the exhausted and persecuted community who have fled to Bangladesh over the past three weeks.

“I took leave from my hospital and came here to help Rohingya, who desperately need medical aid,” said Hossain, who works at the Bangladesh Institute of Research and Rehabilitation for Diabetes, Endocrine and Metabolic Disorders in Dhaka.

More than 409,000 Rohingya have arrived in Bangladesh since August 25 with many of them passing through Daylpara, a remote village some 90km from Cox’s Bazar – one of the first ports of entry for the Muslim minority fleeing a military crackdown.

Since 1948, when the British left Myanmar, the Rohingya have faced entrenched discrimination by the country’s military governments and were stripped of their citizenship in 1982.

Since 2012, Myanmar has witnessed a disturbing rise in religious intolerance, with the Rohingya and other Muslims frequently attacked.

The horrors they’re escaping are manifest in the wide and expansive sky from the Banlgadeshi side of the border, with thick plumes of smoke billowing from villages set ablaze by the Myanmar army and allied mobs.

“People are fleeing their homes with very few belongings and we hope that we can relieve some of their suffering by providing much needed healthcare, water and food,” Ikhtiyar Aslanov, the ICRC’s head of delegation in Bangladesh, said in a statement.

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