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2,984 more Rohingya refugees reach Bhasan Char Thursday

Another batch of 2,984 Rohingya refugees reached Bhasan Char island under Hatia upazila in Noakhali district on Thursday, officials said.

The Rohingyas reached Bhasan Char by seven ships of Bangladesh Navy at about 5:00pm on Thursday (March 10). With them, the number of Rohingya refugees at Bhasan Char Asrayan Centre has stood at 25,586.

Moazzem Hossain, Additional Refugee, Relief and Rehabilitation Commissioner (Deputy Secretary), who is in-charge of Bhasan Char Rohingya Centre, said 2,984 Rohingyas were taken to the helipad, adjacent to the Bangladesh Navy’s pontoon, after they were offloaded from the ships. Later, they were taken to their respective clusters by buses from there.

He further said 77 Rohingyas arrived from Cox’s Bazar to visit their near and dear ones at Bhasan Char, while 149 went to Cox’s Bazar from Bhasan Char. All of them came on the same ships.

Earlier, a total of 27 buses carrying the Rohingyas left for Chittagong from the Ukhiya refugee camp on Wednesday afternoon.

Additional Refugee, Relief and Rehabilitation Commissioner Md Shamsuzzaman Nayan told reporters that the refugees were expected to reach the island on Thursday afternoon.

On February 16, another 1,654 Rohingyas were relocated to Bhasan Char.

So far, 25,586 Rohingyas have been relocated to the island in 12 phases, sources at the office of the Refugee Relief and Repatriation Commissioner said.

Bangladesh plans to relocate 100,000 Rohingyas to Bhasan Char in phases, in the face of growing concerns over the extreme congestion in Cox’s Bazar camps and to avert any untoward incident. It has also been campaigning to ensure quick repatriation of the refugees.

The country is currently hosting more than 1.1 million Rohingyas. The majority of them came to Bangladesh in August 2017, fleeing persecution in their homeland of Rakhine state in Myanmar.