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coxs bazaar rohingya refugee camps fire bangladesh

Islamic Relief prepares to respond to massive fire in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh

Islamic Relief is preparing to respond to a huge fire in the Cox’s Bazar camps in Bangladesh that has destroyed shelters and left around 12,000 people homeless.

Other essential services such as health facilities, water networks, women’s centres, at least 20 learning centres and up to 35 small mosques have also been destroyed in the blaze. Homeless families are now taking shelter in neighbour’s tents or sleeping outside.

More than 1 million Rohingya people who have fled Myanmar have taken refuge in Cox’s Bazar in recent years, with most living in overcrowded and extremely basic conditions in makeshift shelters made of bamboo and flimsy canvas.

Islamic Relief teams on the ground are currently participating in joint assessments with other agencies, and are mobilising aid to help people begin rebuilding their homes as well as water and sanitation facilities such as latrines and bathing cubicles.

Golam Motasim Billah, Islamic Relief’s Acting Country Director in Bangladesh, says:

“The fire ripped through the densely packed camp and has completely destroyed thousands of shelters. People have lost their homes and everything they owned has been burnt to ashes. Many critical services like education and health facilities, and numerous community mosques, have been lost.

“We are committed to help, but people here need much more long-term support. Fires keep happening in Cox’s Bazar and it is vital that more is done to improve the condition of the camps and shelters to keep people safe.” 


Notes to editors

For any questions or to request to interview one of our spokespeople, please contact:

Saeedah Haque [email protected] 

020 3148 3217  

About Islamic Relief

Islamic Relief is a faith-inspired, development and humanitarian agency working to transform and save the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in over 40 countries. Islamic Relief assists people according to need and does not discriminate in any way.

Set up in Birmingham in 1984 by a group of volunteers, we have assisted over 117 million people all over the world. We’re saving lives and empowering people to lift themselves out of poverty in over 40 countries – from Bangladesh to Bosnia, Pakistan to Palestine, Kenya to Kosovo. Islamic Relief is on the ground in some of the world’s most dangerous and difficult places – including Syria and Yemen – strengthening the most marginalised communities to withstand conflict and natural disasters and to build a brighter future. We also support vulnerable people in the UK in partnership with local charities and organisations.

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