Press release

Bangladesh: Medair responds to deadly fire in Rohingya camps

25 March 2021  /  Lausanne

Jonathan Kyle

Asia Communications Manager

International humanitarian organisation Medair is responding to the deadly fire in Kutupalong Refugee Camp on 22 March 2021. Medair is leading the emergency shelter response in Camp 8 East, in partnership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and World Concern.

Kutupalong Refugee Camp is home to more than 600,000 Rohingya. As of the time of writing, 45,000 people have been affected by the fire. At least 15 people were killed, 560 injured, and around 400 people remain unaccounted for.

“This is a devastating blow to a people who have already endured so much suffering,” says Rachel Hirons, Medair’s Country Director in Bangladesh. “Our focus is on providing immediate relief to families who have lost their homes. With the monsoon and cyclone season almost upon us, time is of the essence.”

Shelter and hygiene needs following the fire are extremely high. Medair is providing families with kits containing essential items such as bamboo, tarpaulin, ropes, blankets and mosquito nets, to help rebuild shelters as fast and as securely as possible. Distributions have already started and Medair teams hope to support around 800 households by 27 March 2021.

The Rohingya Crisis in Bangladesh began when Rohingya families fled horrific violence in Rakhine State, Myanmar in August 2017. For many refugees, this is the second time they have lost everything they own.

Medair has been present in Bangladesh since September 2017 providing free health, nutrition and shelter services to Rohingya refugees. In Camp 8 East, Medair is responsible for emergency response.

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Medair is an international humanitarian NGO that provides emergency relief and recovery services to families made vulnerable by natural disasters, conflicts, and other crises. Medair is currently active in 12 countries.

This content was produced with resources gathered by Medair field and Global Support Office staff. The views expressed herein are those solely of Medair and should not be taken, in any way, to reflect the official opinion of any other organisation.