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[Published: Friday November 26 2021]

 Bangladesh begins moving Rohingya to remote island amid criticism

DAKHA, 26 Nov. - (ANA) - Bangladesh has resumed moving Rohingya refugees to a remote and flood-prone island in the Bay of Bengal, despite criticism from human rights and aid groups who claim some have been relocated against their will. 
Deputy refugee commissioner Moozzem Hossain on Wednesday said 2,000 additional people will be transferred this week to Bhashan Char island, where Bangladesh eventually wants to rehouse 100,000 of its approximately one million Rohingya refugees. “Navy ships will bring them to the island on Thursday,” Hossain told the AFP news agency. 
About 850,000 of the mainly Muslim Rohingya minority are packed into camps along the Bangladesh-Myanmar border, most of whom fled a Myanmar military clampdown in 2017 that the United Nations says could amount to genocide. Bangladesh has been praised for taking in the refugees who poured across the border but has had little success finding them permanent homes. 
Among the more than 19,000 Rohingya refugees who have already been relocated to Bhashan Char, hundreds have been arrested in coastal towns after fleeing the island. At least 11 people died in August after a fishing boat carrying escapees capsized.
 Bhashan Char, located some 60 km (37 miles) from the Bangladesh mainland, lies at the heart of an area prone to powerful cyclones that have killed approximately one million people in the last 50 years.   - (ANA) -
AB/ANA/26 November 2021 - - -

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