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Executive Summary for October 10th

We review the latest issues related to refugees, including a new wave of Rohingya refugees fleeing Myanmar, protests over ration cuts in Uganda and a migrant boat sinking off Tunisia.

Published on Oct. 10, 2017 Read time Approx. 2 minutes

New Wave of Rohingya Refugees Flee to Bangladesh

More than 11,000 people crossed into Bangladesh from Myanmar’s violence-torn Rakhine State in one day, the U.N. refugee agency said. Many had spent two weeks reaching the border on foot.

The new arrivals on October 10 brought the number of Rohingya refugees entering Bangladesh in recent weeks to 520,000. They are fleeing a violent crackdown, described by U.N. officials as ethnic cleansing, after militant attacks on August 25.

“Half of my village was burnt down. I saw them do it,” 46-year-old Sayed Azin told Reuters after crossing into Bangladesh, referring to soldiers and Buddhist mobs. “I left everything. I can’t find my relatives … I can’t take this any more,” he told the news agency.

Humanitarian agencies are struggling to provide shelter and basic services amid the rapid influx of refugees to an area that was already sheltering hundreds of thousands of Rohingya.

Fearing a major outbreak of cholera due to poor sanitary conditions, the World Health Organization launched a campaign on October 10 to vaccinate 900,000 people in Bangladesh’s camps.

South Sudanese Refugees Protest Ration Cuts in Uganda

South Sudanese refugees in Uganda held protests after more cuts to their food rations due to a shortfall in international aid, the Guardian reports.

The World Food Programme (WFP) said the cuts were temporary and due to delays in receiving payments. Refugees at Uganda’s Nyumanzi settlement recently demonstrated before officials from the prime minister’s office.

Earlier this year, WFP cut food aid to refugees in Uganda by half after funding shortfalls. In August, the U.N. said only 21 percent of the required $674 million for refugee aid in Uganda had been received.

The WFP also cut aid to refugees in neighboring Kenya last week, citing lack of funds.

Migrant Boat Sinks After Collision Off Tunisia

At least eight Tunisians drowned and around 20 others were missing when their boat collided with a Tunisian naval vessel, Reuters reported.

Around 40 passengers on the boat, which was headed to Europe, were rescued after the boat sank, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said.

The number of boats carrying Tunisians and other migrants to Europe has spiked in recent weeks amid worsening conditions in Libya.

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