UN troops stationed in Bangladesh report a worsening humanitarian crisis in neighboring Myanmar, where military forces have reportedly started burning the homes of the Muslim Rohingya population. At least 123,000 refugees have fled to Bangladesh since August 25, UN officials said.
Watch: Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims flee persecution in Myanmar
According to UN reports from Myanmar in Southeast Asia, a large number of Rohingya refugees are fleeing to neighboring Bangladesh. According to UN Human Rights Council estimates, 233,000 people have already been taken in by the refugee camps in the past week and thousands more are expected to arrive in the coming days. The Rohingya are a Muslim minority group that has yet to be recognized by the state as an official ethnic group and constantly faces strong hostility from the country.
The most recent mass migration of the Rohingya began after Muslim rebels, seemingly from the same group, attacked Myanmar security forces over the weekend. In retaliation, the soldiers burned dozens of Rohingya villages.
According to reports from the region, hundreds of people have been killed in recent fighting. The government in majority-Buddhist Myanmar has evacuated thousands of Buddhist civilians- who do enjoy government support- from the area.
Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi said Wednesday that her government protects all citizens of the Rakhine district, where most of the fighting is taking place. Suu Kyi, once a civil rights activist, said the media is spreading fake news and said that the government has been trying to root out insurgents who were attacking Rohingya villages. She blamed “terrorists” for the recent violence and for disseminating misinformation.