Turkey collects $21 million for Rohingya Muslims fleeing persecution in Myanmar

ANADOLU AGENCY
ANKARA
Published 23.10.2017 14:34
Updated 23.10.2017 14:40
Rohingya Muslim men, who crossed over from Myanmar into Bangladesh, carry their mother in a cloth tied to bamboo stick at Kutupalong refugee camp, Bangladesh, Monday, Oct. 23, 2017 (AP Photo)
Rohingya Muslim men, who crossed over from Myanmar into Bangladesh, carry their mother in a cloth tied to bamboo stick at Kutupalong refugee camp, Bangladesh, Monday, Oct. 23, 2017 (AP Photo)

Turkey has raised a donation of more than 80 million liras ($21 million) since 2012 to help Rohingya being persecuted in Myanmar's Rakine state, head of the country's emergency management authority said.

"More than 60 million Turkish ($16.2 million) liras have been collected to date. Turkish Red Crescent also raised over 20 million Turkish liras ($5.4 million)," Mehmet Güllüoğlu, the head of Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD), told Anadolu Agency.

He said Turkey is still waiting for the allocation of the land in Bangladesh to set up a camp for Rohingya Muslims.

Since Aug. 25, more than 603,000 Rohingya have crossed from western state of Rakhine into Bangladesh, according to the U.N.'s migration agency's latest report on Monday.

The refugees are fleeing a military operation in which Myanmar's armed forces and Buddhist mobs have killed men, women and children, looted homes and torched Rohingya villages. According to Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Abul Hasan Mahmood Ali, around 3,000 Rohingya have been killed in the crackdown.

Launched on Sept. 11, "Rakhine Weeps, Turkey Lends Hand," a campaign by AFAD, Turkish Red Crescent and Turkish Religious Foundation (TDV) has been raising donations for Rohingya Muslims.

Güllüoğlu said that Turkish people, alongside the government, become participants of aid campaigns.

People can donate 10 Turkish liras ($3) by typing "ARAKAN" (old name of Rakhine) in an SMS and send it to 2868 or else through bank transfers, Güllüoğlu reminded.

The Rohingya, described by the U.N. as the world's most persecuted people, have faced heightened fears of attack since dozens were killed in communal violence in 2012.

Last October, following attacks on border posts in Rakhine's Maungdaw district, security forces launched a five-month crackdown in which, according to Rohingya groups, around 400 people were killed.

The U.N. documented mass gang rapes, killings -- including of infants and young children -- brutal beatings, and disappearances committed by security personnel. In a report, U.N. investigators said such violations may have constituted crimes against humanity.

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