Foreign Affairs Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's spouse Emine Erdoğan paid a visit to the Rohingya Muslims, from Arakan, Myanmar, who are residing in very difficult conditions at the Banduba Camp. The committee distributed aid, marking the first time a foreign nation or entity other than the U.N. has been allowed to distribute aid in Arakan.
During the camp visit, a Turkish Red Crescent official briefed Minister Davutoğlu, Emine Erdoğan and their accompanying committee on the current conditions. According to the official, there are 8,532 people being sheltered at the camp which contains 40 living units, housing ten families each. There are also 801 tents set up at the camp. The Turkish Red Crescent has begun distributing kitchen sets and boxes. Meanwhile, Davutoğlu has announced that they have signed an agreement that as of today Turkish Red Crescent and the Red Cross will begin working together.
"THERE ARE UNBEARABLE IMAGES"
When Emine Erdoğan asked what the biggest problem was for the refugees, Turkish Red Crescent officials stated that the Muslims staying here had a difficult time finding accommodation and food. Emine Erdoğan commented on the experience by saying, "There are unbearable images."
Muhammed Çingi, a Rohingya Muslim, requested to speak with the committee. He not only relayed information about the living conditions at the camp, but he also said they wanted to return back to their residential area and also mentioned that they needed a mosque. Çingi explained that his children need medical assistance and although the Myanmar government is trying to offer support, it is not enough. Çingi was sobbing as he explained that there were 11 members from his family alone and 100 of his fellow villagers staying at the camp. Davutoğlu tried to calm him while Emine Erdoğan was unable to hold back her tears.
THE BUDDHISTS WERE NOT FORGOTTEN
The Turkish delegation moved on to a Buddhist camp where they also distributed aid. Listening to the Buddhists explain their woes, Minister Davutoğlu stated that everyone should have the same rights and that they want Buddhists and Muslims to live in harmony together. Later, Davutoğlu visited a Buddhist priest to which he said, "I believe that under your leadership, both Buddhists and Muslims will be able to live peacefully together. Islam and Buddhism are religions of peace."
Davutoğlu then went on to visit a mosque in the region, where he performed his Friday prayer. The Turkish delegation's visit stirred a lot of attention amongst the Arakanese, who would line up on the road in crowds waving as the convoy passed.
3.5 MILLION IN AID COLLECTED ALREADY
The aid campaign spearheaded by the Prime Ministry Emergency and Natural Disaster Presidency (AFAD) has collected 3,477,752 liras thus far.
ACCOUNT NUMBERS FOR DONATIONS
Akbank (Ankara Mithatpaşa Şb) TR83 0004 6003 5488 8000 0028 68 (TL) TR34 0004 6003 5400 1000 0028 68 (Dollar) TR11 0004 6003 5403 6000 0028 68 (Euro)
Garanti Bank (Ankara Kızılay Branch) TR52 0006 2000 0820 0006 2528 68 (TL) TR58 0006 2000 0820 0009 0849 93 (Dollar) TR10 0006 2000 0820 0009 0828 68 (Euro)
Halkbank (Ankara Mithatpaşa Şb) TR97 0001 2009 3960 0016 0001 20 (TL) TR48 0001 2009 3960 0053 0006 82 (Dollar) TR57 0001 2009 3960 0058 0000 94 (Euro)
Ziraat Bank (Ankara Kızılay Branch) TR27 0001 0006 8500 0028 6850 05 (TL) TR97 0001 0006 8500 0028 6850 06 (Dollar) TR70 0001 0006 8500 0028 6850 07 (Euro)
İş Bank (Ankara Mithatpaşa Şb) TR02 0006 4000 0014 2280 0028 68 (TL) TR49 0006 4000 0024 2281 9201 92 (Dollar) TR61 0006 4000 0024 2280 0028 68 (Euro)