Around 60 babies a day are being born in vast refugee camps in Bangladesh, sheltering hundreds of thousands of mainly Rohingya Muslims who have fled Myanmar, the United Nations children’s agency UNICEF said on Wednesday.
Nearly 700,000 Rohingya fled to Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh in the past nine months after a Myanmar military crackdown that the United Nations, United States and Britain have denounced as ethnic cleansing. Myanmar has denied that any ethnic cleansing occurred.
UNICEF said in a statement that since the crisis began more than 16,000 babies had been born in the camps, of which only about 3,000 were delivered in health facilities.
“Around 60 babies a day are taking their first breath in appalling conditions, away from home, to mothers who have survived displacement, violence, trauma and, at times, rape,” said Edouard Beigbeder, UNICEF’s Representative in Bangladesh.