Capsize toll rises to 23 as Rohingya influx continued

COX BAZAR, Aug 31, 2017 (BSS) – The death toll from Wednesday night’s boat capsize today stood at 23 with recovery of 19 more floating bodies of Myanmar nationals as Rohingya influx continued amid escalated violence in the cross-border Rakhine state, officials said here today.

Officials and witnesses said people in the neighbourhood recovered 19 bodies from the common Naf River a day after four bodies were retrieved from the waters as several thousand Rohingyas rallied on the borders in their attempts to sneak in Bangladesh to evade casualties.

Officer in charge of Teknaf police station Mohammad Mainuddin said 12 of the bodies were of children with rest being women while Teknaf’s Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) or administrative chief Jahid Hossein said the bodies would be buried in proper manner.

District administration and Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) officials said the Rohingyas continued to penetrate throughout 64 kilometres of pours frontiers, mostly land borders while the Naf River demarcated parts of the boundary lines.

The International Migration Organization (IOM) two days ago said at least 18,000 Rohingyas entered Bangladesh since the eruption of violence on August 25 while officials and witnesses said the influx appeared to be highest in the past two days.

“The Rohingyas are trying to enter Bangladesh in numerous groups . . . despite stringent security vigil on the borders they continued to sneak in,” deputy commissioner of Cox’s Bazar Mohammad Ali Hossain told BSS.

The fresh trend of influx began since last week on the face of army-led clampdown to drive out militant elements of the minority Muslim community in Buddhist dominated western Rakhine state of Myanmar.