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Health Minister says

7,000 pregnant women among Rohingya refugees

17 Sep 2017, 20:44 | updated: 17 Sep 2017, 21:23

Online Desk
An exhausted Rohingya refugee woman touches the shore after crossing the Bangladesh-Myanmar border by boat through the Bay of Bengal, in Shah Porir Dwip. Reuters

Dhaka: Bangladesh Health Minister Mohammad Nasim on Sunday said some 7,000 women out of the Rohingya people who have taken shelter in Bangladesh in the face of persecution by Myanmar forces in Rakhine State are pregnant.

"While visiting the areas in Cox's Bazar where the Rohingyas have taken shelter, we've found that 7,000 women out of the total refugees are pregnant. They've taken shelter in our country being subjected to torture and repression in their own homeland," he said.

While addressing the inaugural session of the two-day '9th One Health Bangladesh Conference at a city hotel, the minister also said the Rohingya influx rekindles the 1971 War of Liberation. "I smelt the same at the Rohingya camps what I'd smelt at the shelter centres in India at that time (during the Liberation War)," he said.

He said the government is providing food and health care services to the Roningyas and many countries have come forward to help them.

"Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has stood by the Rohingyas like a mother, like a sister. Today, the international community is against Myanmar. The Bangladesh government continued its efforts to woo the international community to mount pressure on Myanmar to take its citizens back," the minister said.

He also said the prime minister will strongly raise the issue at the upcoming 72nd UN General Assembly.

On Saturday, a 14-member delegation of the Awami League-led 14-party alliance visited Cox's Bazar to provide relief materials among the Rohingyas.

Talking about the '9th One Health Bangladesh Conference', the minister urged all to work in a coordinated way to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

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