Angelina Jolie visits Rohingya camp in Bangladesh

By AFP

COX’S BAZAR — Hollywood superstar Angelina Jolie visited a Rohingya refugee camp in Bangladesh on Monday ahead of a new UN appeal for nearly US$1 billion to look after the refugee influx.

After arriving in the South Asian nation, Jolie, a special envoy of the UN Refugee agency UNHCR, went straight to a camp in Teknaf near the Myanmar border to talk to some of the 720,000 Muslims who fled a military clampdown in the neighbouring state in August 2017.

The 43-year-old made no immediate public comment, but Cox’s Bazar district deputy police chief Mr Ikbal Hossain told AFP that Jolie will be visiting more camps on Tuesday.

Jolie is in Bangladesh to assess the humanitarian needs of the one million Rohingya in camps around the town of Cox’s Bazar.

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She has previously met with displaced Rohingya while in Myanmar in July 2015 and in India in 2006.

Bangladesh has been reeling since more than 730,000 Rohingya arrived from Myanmar after August 2017. More than 620,000 of the Muslims live in the Kutupalong camp, the world’s largest refugee settlement.

There were already about 300,000 in the camps before the exodus which has strained Bangladesh’s resources to the limit.

Jolie will conclude her visit by meeting Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen, and other senior officials in Dhaka, a UNHCR statement said.

The talks will focus on how the UNHCR can help Bangladesh’s efforts for the Rohingya and the need for “sustainable solutions” to settle the persecuted minority, the statement added.

The UN is to soon launch a new international appeal for $920 million to meet the needs of Rohingya refugees and the communities hosting them, the refugee agency said.

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