Two Rohingya leaders murdered in a camp in Bangladesh

Two Rohingya leaders murdered in camp in Bangladesh

À DAY

Two leaders of the Rohingya community were stabbed to death by a dozen people on Saturday in a refugee camp in southeast Bangladesh, police said on Sunday.  

Refugee camps in Bangladesh house in squalid conditions around one million Rohingya, a predominantly Muslim community persecuted in neighboring Burma. The violence there has increased in recent months, linked to drug trafficking as well as political rivalries between Rohingya organizations. 

The two 'majhis' (Rohingya camp leaders) were killed on Saturday night at Camp 13 in Cox's Bazar, southeast Bangladesh, police spokesman Faruk Ahmed said. 

“More than a dozen Rohingya miscreants stabbed Maulvi Mohammad Yunus, 38, who is the head majhi of Camp 13. They also stabbed to death Mohammad Anwar, 38, another majhi. Yunus died instantly and Amwar died in hospital,” he said.

An official from the police camp security unit attributed the killings to the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), a Rohingya armed group fighting against the Burmese junta. 

“These are targeted killings by ARSA. The internal clashes in Burma are having an impact on the security situation in the camps,” the official said on condition of anonymity. 

According to the police chief in Bangladesh's Cox's Bazar district, there is currently an escalation of violence in the camps. 

“In the last three months alone, at least 14 Rohingyas have been murdered in the camps. The number of murders in the camp has increased compared to last year,” the official, Mahfuzul Islam, told AFP. 

Several ARSA members have been charged this year after the murder in September 2021 of the main Rohingya leader Mohib Ullah, who had been received at the White House by former US President Donald Trump. The armed group, of which at least 8,000 members were later arrested by Bangladesh police, has denied any involvement.