Barbed wire fences were erected surrounding 33 Rohingya refugee camps in in Ukhiya and Teknaf of Cox’s Bazar at a cost of approximately Tk 1.95 billion, but the Rohingyas are now fleeing from the camps to various districts including Chattogram and Cox’s Bazar, cutting through the barbed wire fences.
According to Rohingya leaders and law enforcement agencies, uncertainty over repatriation, permanent settlement in Bangladesh and search for extra income and work are causing the Rohingyas to flee the camps.
Currently, there are 12.5 million Rohingyas registered with 33 refugee camps, and 800,000 of them arrived in Bangladesh in the next couple of months after 25 August 2017. However, not a single Rohingya refugee has been repatriated in the past six years.
According to inofrmation provided by police, intelligence agencies and local representatives, more than 300,000 Rohingyas have fled the refugee camps in six years, and at least 150,000 of them live in the settlements in hill area of Cox’s Bazar town while the remaining 150,000 Rohingyas settled in Teknaf, Ukhiya, Eidgaon, Ramu and Chakrai upazilas of Cox’s Bazar and various upazila of three hill tracts districts – Bandarban, Khagrachhari and Rangamati. Law enforcement agencies including police have detained 68,572 Rohingyas in 16 districts including Chattogram, Manikganj, Cumilla, Jashore, Naogaon, Satkhira, Chandpur and Barisal over the past six years and sent them back to refugee camps.