By Umar Farooq
WASHINGTON (AA) – The U.S. on Monday announced giving over $185 million in additional aid to Rohingya relief efforts in Myanmar and Bangladesh.
The announcement was made by U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, at a meeting attended by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.
In a statement, Haley said the bulk of the aid would go towards helping Rohingya refugee communities in Bangladesh to support emergency services such as food, water, sanitation, health care and psychosocial support.
“Still more needs to be done, so we need other countries to do their part as well," she said in the statement.
"This additional funding brings U.S. humanitarian assistance in response to the Rakhine State crisis to nearly $389 million since the outbreak of violence in August 2017," read the statement.
– Rohingya Persecution
Since Aug. 25, 2017, nearly 24,000 Rohingya Muslims have been killed by Myanmar’s state forces, according to a report by the Ontario International Development Agency (OIDA).
More than 34,000 Rohingya were also thrown into fires, while over 114,000 others were beaten, said the OIDA report, entitled Forced Migration of Rohingya: The Untold Experience.
According to Amnesty International, more than 750,000 Rohingya refugees, mostly children and women, have fled Myanmar and crossed into Bangladesh after Myanmar forces launched a crackdown on the minority Muslim community.
The Rohingya, described by the UN as the world's most persecuted people, have faced heightened fears of attack since dozens were killed in communal violence in 2012.
The UN has documented mass gang rapes, killings — including of infants and young children — brutal beatings, and disappearances committed by Myanmar state forces. In a report, UN investigators said such violations may have constituted crimes against humanity.