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Executive Summary for September 1st

We review the latest issues related to refugees, including the death by drowning of Rohingya Muslims fleeing to Bangladesh, a deal for 12,000 Burundian refugees to return from Tanzania, and claims of abuse at a U.K. immigration detention center.

Published on Sep. 1, 2017 Read time Approx. 2 minutes

Rohingya Refugees Drown Fleeing Myanmar Violence

The bodies of 15 children and 11 women were recovered by Bangladeshi border guards after their boats sank while escaping violence in Myanmar, the Associated Press reported.

At least three boats carrying Rohingya refugees capsized in the Naf river at Teknaf in Cox’s Bazar on Wednesday, according to Bangladeshi officials.

Nearly 40,000 Rohingya have fled Rakhine state. At least 117 people died in a security crackdown after attacks by militant groups on police posts and an army base last week, according to Reuters.

Over 400 Hindus living in Rakhine state also fled to neighboring Bangladesh because of attacks by armed groups.

Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh told monitors that security forces and a Buddhist vigilante group from Rakhine have unleashed a campaign aimed at pushing out the Muslim minority group, including reports of arson attacks against villages.

At least 20,000 Rohingya are stranded on the border between Myanmar and Bangladesh, United Nations officials told Reuters, warning that their number is expected to rise.

12,000 Burundian Refugees to Be Repatriated from Tanzania

Some 12,000 Burundian refugees in Tanzania will return home over the next four months with the assistance of the U.N. refugee agency.

The deal for voluntary returns between September 7 and December was agreed at a meeting between Tanzania, Burundi and the UNHCR.

“No one has forced them to get back to their country. They have been self-motivated and what Tanzania is doing is to facilitate their safe return home,” said Tanzania’s minister for home affairs, Mwigulu Nchemba.

Covert Film Shows Abuses in U.K. Detention Center

The BBC has footage of employees of security company G4S abusing migrants and asylum-seekers slated for deportation from the United Kingdom.

BBC Panorama producers said they obtained covert footage showing staff “mocking, abusing and assaulting” detainees. It was recorded by a custody officer at the immigration removal center near London’s Gatwick airport.

The documentary, set to air on Monday, also alleges “widespread self-harm and attempted suicides” as well as drug use.

G4S said it had suspended nine members of staff at the center while it investigates the allegations.

The center, Brook House, houses 500 people, including rejected asylum seekers and people who overstayed their visas, mostly from Pakistan, Albania, Nigeria, Afghanistan and India.

There are 11 immigration detention removal centers in England, where most people are detained for under a month while awaiting deportation, though some remain for over a year.

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