Bangladesh, May 23: United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ spokesperson Stephane Dujarric on Tuesday spoke about how nearly 200,000 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh’s Cox Bazar are at risk from flooding and landslides during the monsoons this year. According to a survey by the United Nations (UN), during monsoons, Coz Bazar receives at least 2.5 metres of rainfall which results in flooding. Going by the statistical figures, about 883 community facilities having nearly 150,000-200,000 refugees are at a risk from flooding and landslides. Dujarric spoke how UN was making efforts to avert such a kind of situation.
He also spoke about the 7,000 Rohingya refugees those were affected by storms or landslides earlier this month. He further spoke about the problems being faced in order to overcome this kind of a crisis like situation and said lack of adequate space and proper shelters for the Rohingya refugees is making things difficult for the UN. However, the UN is making progress with the help of its migration agency, International Organization for Migration (IOM), which has started its canal dredging project in Southern Bangladesh to protect these refugees from floods and landslides. The canal will also benefit the local agriculture. The IOM is working in a fast paced manner so that the project gets completed before the onset of the monsoons and the Rohingya refugees remain safe.
The UN has employed at least 50 Bangladeshi labourers to carry out the work. With the help of this project, the risk of flooding will reduce and irrigation channels will open during the dry seasons. Bangladesh’s Cox Bazar has been always prone to landslides and flooding and while Bangladesh knows how to deal with such natural calamities, this humongous area becomes a bit hard to manage. With the the international humanitarian community working to support and protect the refugees from risk, Cox Bazar may finally be a better place. The IOM always extends help in such projects. Some of the other projects undertaken are- bridge building, access roads, steps, drains, and slope protection work.