Rohingya refugee crisis: Turkish first lady visits Rohingya refugees
12:00 AM, September 08, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:34 AM, September 08, 2017

Turkish first lady visits Rohingya refugees

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Turkish First Lady Emine Erdogan and Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu yesterday visited a registered Rohingya refugee camp in Ukhia upazila to learn about the extent of persecution inflicted on the Rohingyas.

Arriving in Cox's Bazar on a flight, they went to the Kutupalang camp at around 1:35pm and spoke to some Rohingya men and women. There, they heard their stories of persecution by Myanmar troops.

They also spoke to a bullet-hit Rohingya youth, who fled to Bangladesh a few days after violence flared up in Rakhine state on August 25.

During their one-and-half hour stay at the camp, they held a meeting with Foreign Minister Mahmud Ali, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Shahriar Alam and the deputy commissioner and superintendent of Cox's Bazar police about the overall crisis.

Bangladeshi officials briefed them about the gravity of the crisis and how the country was trying to cope with giving shelter, food and healthcare to the huge influx of Rohingyas.

Some 13,000 Rohingyas used to stay in Kutupalang camp. After the fresh exodus, now more than 50,000 refugees have taken shelter there.

Talking to a group of journalists at the camp, the first lady affirmed that the government of Turkey would stand beside the Rohingyas.

She said Turkey will do everything possible to help Rohingyas.

"Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan will take up the issue at the UN General Assembly in a bid to bring an immediate resolution to the Rohingya crisis," she said, replying to a query by a reporter.

They flew back to Dhaka in the afternoon.

Earlier, a special aircraft carrying Turkey's First Lady Emine Erdogan and her entourage landed at Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka yesterday. State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam received her at the airport.

Hours earlier, Turkey's foreign minister arrived in Dhaka in another aircraft.

The visit followed the latest bloodshed in Myanmar's Rakhine state that resulted in the fresh influx of Rohingyas into Bangladesh.

On August 31, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called his Bangladeshi counterpart Abdul Hamid and talked about the current state of the Rohingya crisis. The Turkish president supported measures taken for the Rohingya issue by Bangladesh.

Erdogan expressed concern over the ongoing violence in Rakhine state and assured Bangladesh's president of full support and cooperation from Ankara.

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