UN launches $951 mn appeal for Rohingya refugees

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Geneva, March 17 (IANS) United Nations agencies and NGO partners have released a 2018 Joint Response Plan for the Rohingya Humanitarian Crisis, with a $951 million appeal to meet the urgent needs of nearly 900,000 Rohingya refugees.

Announcing the appeal before the media at the UN in Geneva on Friday, the agencies said it also applies to more than 330,000 vulnerable Bangladeshis in the communities hosting the refugees from Myanmar, Xinhua news agency reported.

The 2018 appeal for the Rohingya Humanitarian Crisis was launched by UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi, IOM Director General William Swing and the UN resident coordinator in Bangladesh Mia Seppo.

“We are talking about truly critical needs here both on the part of the Bangladeshi communities who have so generously opened their doors, and of a stateless and refugee population that even prior to this crisis was among the world’s most marginalised and at risk,” said Grandi.

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“The solutions to this crisis lie inside Myanmar, and conditions must be established that will allow refugees to return home. But today we are appealing for help with the immediate needs, and these needs are vast.”

The UN officials said the appeal aims to support environmentally sustainable solutions, confidence-building and resilience of affected populations until the end of 2018 and includes contingency planning for 80,000 more Rohingya refugees in the coming months.

Over 16 million liters of safe water are needed every day for the Rohingya refugee population, said the UN agencies, adding that some 12,200 metric tons of food are required every month and at least 180,000 refugee families need cooking fuel.

Around 50,000 latrines also need to be constructed and maintained, and at least 30 sewage management facilities are required.

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