GENEVA (SWITZERLAND) -An appeal for nearly $1 billion to extend aid to Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh is more than a third funded, said the head of the United Nations refugee agency on Tuesday, as officials and refugees called on donors not to forget the crisis.
Nearly a million Rohingya are living in crowded camps in southern Bangladesh comprising the world’s largest refugee settlement since fleeing a military crackdown in Myanmar’s Rakhine state nearly four years ago. Others are displaced internally and a military coup in Myanmar in February and subsequent violence is complicating their return.
Filippo Grandi told a UN briefing that donors had so far pledged $340 million for the 2021 programme, meaning it is currently 36% funded, without naming the countries. The US mission in Geneva said it was providing nearly $155 million in new humanitarian assistance.
“It is important that the Rohingya crisis is not forgotten as action is taken hopefully to address the political crisis that is affecting Myanmar now,” Grandi said.
UN and Bangladeshi officials have warned that securing donations will be challenging due to high costs associated with the COVID-19 response and recovery.
“We should not be forgotten. The global community should help us as much as they can,” Nurul Amin, a Rohingya refugee in Bangladesh camps, said.