Their names are Abo Taher, Rahena or Bithi. They belong to the Rohingya minority and are among the 650,000 people who have had to flee Burma to save their lives. Today, they live in crowded camps in southern Bangladesh, in very precarious conditions. Our teams gathered their testimonials.
ABO TAHER, 58 – DOMDOMIA CAMP, BANGLADESH
I came with my whole family to Bangladesh. We arrived on October 26th. Our village in Burma was close to the border. To avoid taking any risks, we fled at night after there were gunshots and many people were killed. Everyone was in panic, scared. The kids were crying. I lost almost all my neighbours.
Thankfully, my family and I managed to get away from it and went to hide in the forest. A few days later we returned to the village but it had been completely destroyed. All the houses had been burned down. We lost everything. I have nothing left.
My family went back to hide in the forest. I left to find a boat to cross the river and came back for my family. The passage cost me a lot of money and today I can’t afford to pay the smuggler back. I’m an old man. I can’t work and I don’t know how I’m going to find the money.
Here in Bangladesh we have received help. The Bangladeshi people are very generous with us and we thank them. Unfortunately, sometimes we run out of food. We are obliged to share what we receive.
I am Burmese even if the authorities say otherwise and I would like to return home even if the Bangladeshi welcome us. But today there are still people who are being murdered. I think it’s going to take a while for things to get better and for us to come back.”
Since the beginning of this crisis, our teams have worked tirelessly to relieve the suffering of the refugees. In the camps, they distribute kits of essential items, shelter kits, provide clean water and build latrines.