Kutupalong refugee camp
|Kutupalong refugee camp|
কুতুপালং শরনার্থী শিবির
Kutupalong refugee camp in Bangladesh
(Photo taken by Maaz Hussain/VOA)
|District||Cox's Bazar District|
|Population (17 October 2017)|
22,241 (main camp)|
547,616 (expansion site)
Kutupalong refugee camp (Bengali: কুতুপালং শরনার্থী শিবির) is a refugee camp in Ukhia, Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, inhabited mostly by Rohingya refugees that fled from ethnic and religious persecution in neighboring Myanmar. It is one of two government-run refugee camps in Cox's Bazar, the other being the Nayapara refugee camp. The two refugee camps had a combined population of around 34,000 registered refugees in July 2017. In September 2017, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimated that the combined population of the two refugee camps had increased to over 77,000.
"Kutupalong refugee camp" may also refer to the makeshift camps that have sprung up adjacent to the government-operated camp, although these are not officially part of the refugee camp. Makeshift camps at Kutupalong and surrounding areas have grown to accommodate refugees fleeing Myanmar over the years. An estimated 700,000 Rohingya Muslims and Hindus have fled Myanmar into Bangladesh since 25 August 2017, when the Myanmar military began new military operations against them. The camp began informally in 1991, as Rohingya people ofMyanmar began to flee their homes due to persecutions under Operation Pyi Thaya (Operation Clean up and Beautiful Nation) of the Myanmar defence.
In 2017, the Kutupalong makeshift camp and surrounding camps at Ghumdum, Balukhali, Thangkhali and others swelled rapidly and merged into each other due to an unprecedented influx of refugees. The International Organization for Migration refers to the collective settlement as the Kutupalong–Balukhali expansion site. As of 14 January 2018, the expansion site had a combined population of 547,616, making it the world's largest refugee camp, ahead of Dadaab in Kenya which had 245,126 residents as of April 2017.
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