Bangladesh: Imminent rainy season threatens thousands of refugees back into suffering and misery

Bangladesh: Imminent rainy season threatens thousands of refugees back into suffering and misery

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Posted
2/2/18

COX'S BAZAR (Feb. 2, 2018) —  Refugees from Myanmar in Bangladesh are facing dramatic weeks ahead: the upcoming rainy season might turn into a disaster of threatening floods and landslides, CARE warned.

The situation of the nearly 900,000 people living in the refugee camps of the Cox's Bazar region will drastically worsen. The area in the southeast of the country, which previously consisted mainly of agricultural land, grassland and rainforest, was cleared for the construction of refugee tents. The soil can therefore no longer absorb large water masses and is extremely vulnerable to landslides. There is a danger that thousands of people could lose their tent homes under the mudslides. Persistent rains and flash floods threaten to flood the area, especially the valleys. 
 
"We are running out of time,"  says Zia Choudhury, CARE Bangladesh’s country director. "Our CARE team on the ground is working rapidly to stabilize as many houses as possible. Hundreds, perhaps thousands, could lose their homes unless we all act faster."
 
Since the beginning of the crisis in August 2017, CARE has reached nearly 50,000 people with emergency shelters. Through the distribution of tarpaulins and bamboo pipes as well as through hands-on training for refugees, CARE has helped to stabilize makeshift tents and prepare refugees for the upcoming rainy season. To date, CARE has supported almost 200,000 refugees in the region of Cox’s Bazar with emergency shelters, medical care and other assistance.

About CARE:
Founded in 1945, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE has more than seven decades of experience helping people prepare for disasters, providing lifesaving assistance when a crisis hits, and helping communities recover after the emergency has passed. CARE places special focus on women and children who are often disproportionately affected by disasters. Last year, CARE worked in 94 countries to reach 80 million people, including more than 11 million through emergency response and humanitarian aid. Learn more at www.care.org. 

For media interviews, contact Nicole Harris, media relations manager, nharris@care.org; 404-735-0871. 

Potibonia Camp in Bangladesh Credit: CARE/Nancy Farese

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