ACTNews, COX’S BAZAR – The sound of bullets filled the air, up in the sky where borderline between Myanmar and Bangladesh could not be mapped. Far beneath, hundreds of Rohingya Muslims flocked a farmland, lining up after they crossed the border between Myanmar and Bangladesh. Ghumdhum security post that guarded the border had given up withstanding these asylum seekers on Saturday (26/8).
On that day, hundreds of asylum seekers fled the border point to Ghumdhum village. The shooting sound from their homeland made them walk faster. These people crouched near a swamp, stood behind bushes to avoid the guards on security post.
“We were successful avoiding shootings in Myanmar and tried to enter Bangladesh. Last night we waited, after repelled by Bangladeshi security police. This morning, alhamdulillah, we can enter,” Hamid Hossain (42) told Reuters. He and three other Rohingya families finally entered Bangladesh on Saturday morning (26/8).
After conflict broke out on Friday early morning (25/8) in Rakhine State, Myanmar, thousands of Rohingya Muslims fled their homes. Until that day, there were 80 fatalities according to Reuters. With their necks on the line, being “stateless refugees” in Bangladesh looked more preferable than murdered in their homeland.
Horror still lingered on their faces as they told the stories of Burmese military’s cruelty. Some asylum seekers even begged on their knees not to be repatriated.
“Please save us. We want to stay here. If we go back, we may be killed,” Amid Hossain (61) repeated these words hopelessly.
Dozens of Rohingya people seek asylums in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh
The exact number of Rohingya asylum seekers who entered Bangladesh was still unclear. However, some international media predicted the number to be in the thousands, and most of them were still stuck in Myanmar-Bangladesh border.
“They try to enter Bangladesh, but we have zero tolerance policy, so nobody can enter,” Mohammad Ali Hossain, Vice Commissioner of Cox’s Bazar, stated. Cox’s Bazar is a Bangladeshi district that directly neighbors Myanmar.
Nevertheless, around 3,000 Rohingya Muslims could enter and take refuge in some refugee camps in Bangladeshi villages since Friday (25/8). AFP news mentioned, these refugees were placed in Balukhali refugee camp. On Sunday (27/8), at least 100 new refugees, women and children, came and added the number. All alive to tell the same tale: the brutality of Burmese military.
Besides Balukhali Camp, most of these Rohingya people also seek asylum in Kutupalong Camp. One of them was Mokhtar Hossaid, a Rohingya young man who escaped after the conflict broke out on Friday (25/8). He explained, the Burmese military mercilessly martyred Rohingya civilians. He himself was shot in front of his house in Medi, Maungdaw, the morning the conflict broke out.
“Police and military personnel shot at us unstoppably,” Mokhtar revealed. Now he was recovering in a clinic in Kutupalong Camp, Cox’s Bazar.
Indonesia qurbani to relief Rohingya’s grief
Wave after wave of refugees is expected to keep coming to Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. On Friday (25/8), Aksi Cepat Tanggap’s partner in Chittagong, Bangladesh, revealed that these people will seek the closest asylum, Cox’s Bazar.
The prediction is close to the truth. Kutupalong and Balukhai Camp become the main target of Rohingya people who go to Bangladesh.
“Kutupalong Camp now shelters about 15 thousand families or 66 thousand people. Meanwhile, Balukhali Camp shelters 4 thousand families,” said Hasan, ACT’s partner in Chittagong.
Hasan further added, approaching Eid al Adha, undoubtedly this number would rise. In this opinion, there would be many new refugees celebrating their first Eid al Adha in the refugee camp.
“Last year, the number of qurban meat we deliver them seem to not be enough. Alhamdulillah, most refugees do receive qurban meat, even though not in abundant number,” he said. With many new refugees to come, he wished Eid al Adha celebration will relief the terror and trauma they currently felt.
Insha Allah, this year Global Qurban will greet grieving Rohingya Muslims in refugee camps in Bangladesh. This Eid al Adha, qurbani happiness from Indonesia will relief the grief they feel.