14 rescued alive out of 50 refugees fleeing remote island as authorities fear they drowned and their remains washed away
“We recovered four bodies on Monday and I have got information about another five bodies recovered today (Tuesday),” Mahe Alam, the police chief on the Bhasan Char island, told Anadolu Agency by phone.
DHAKA, Bangladesh (AA) – Bangladeshi rescuers have managed to recover bodies of 9 Rohingya refugees whose boat capsized in the Bay of Bengal early Saturday morning while attempting to flee the remote island of Bhasan Char.
Alam said the bodies have been given to their families for burial.
According to police and Rohingya sources, nearly 50 members of the persecuted people attempted to flee the island on a local fishing boat. However, the boat capsized in the Bay of Bengal due to rough weather.
Bangladesh’s police, coast guard, navy, and air force launched a joint operation immediately after receiving the information and were able to safely rescue 14 Rohingya alive.
The majority of those still missing are children, and it is feared that they have drowned and their remains have been washed away in the huge ocean.
At least 15 Rohingya refugees died in February 2020 when an overcrowded wooden boat carrying over 100 people capsized en route to Malaysia.
Bangladesh has relocated nearly 20,000 Rohingya on the island in stages, despite international concern about their safety in the remote location, which is reportedly prone to natural disasters.
Currently, more than 1.1 million stateless Rohingya have been living in Bangladesh’s refugee camps in the southern district of Cox’s Bazar that is considered to be the world’s largest refugee settlement. Most of the persecuted Rohingya fled a brutal military crackdown in Myanmar’s Rakhine State in August 2017.