DHAKA, Bangladesh – An international aid agency projects that 48,000 babies will be born this year in overcrowded refugee camps for the Rohingya Muslims who have fled to Bangladesh from neighboring Myanmar.
Save the Children warned in a report released Friday that the babies will be at increased risk of disease and malnutrition, and therefore of dying before the age of five. The agency said that most of the babies will probably be born at home in tents.
More than 600,000 Rohingya have fled what the United Nations says is a campaign of ethnic cleansing by the Myanmar military and Buddhist mobs since late August last year. The Rohingya are from Rakhine state in western Myanmar but are denied citizenship there.
A Bangladeshi social services official called the projection of 48,000 babies mind-boggling.