Cyclone Mocha cross Bangladesh, Myanmar coast

Dhaka, May 14 (EFE).- Cyclone Mocha began to cross the eastern coast of Bangladesh at a speed of 215 kilometers per hour and is expected to hit northern Myanmar, and the coastal area from Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh, home to the Kutupalong Rohingya camp with almost 1 million refugees.

“The peripheral part of the cyclone has made landfall, but the full body has not yet. The body of the cyclone will make landfall in the afternoon,” meteorologist Tariful Newaz from the Bangladesh Meteorological Department told EFE that part of the cyclone had made landfall and the rest would follow in the afternoon.

The storm will likely cross land near Myanmar’s Sittwe city, and in southern Bangladesh’s Teknaf and St. Martin’s Island, he said. Half of the storm, including the eye of the cyclone, is headed for Myanmar and the other half for Bangladesh.

Cyclone Mocha has a diameter of more than 500 kilometers, and its impact will be felt in many areas of Bangladesh, the Meteorological Department said.

The bureau estimated that the cyclone’s speed is currently 215 kmph, close to the maximum category of a super cyclone, although it could decrease in intensity at landfall.

Authorities on Saturday requested the port of Cox’s Bazar, on the country’s east coast, to issue the maximum danger signal of 10 for this region, and danger signal 8 in the coastal district of Chittagong.

Refugee camps, with almost 1 million people living in vulnerable conditions, are one of the main concerns of humanitarian agencies

“As Cyclone Mocha intensifies over the Bay of Bengal, I am extremely concerned for children in harm’s way in Bangladesh, including half a million Rohingya refugee children,” UNICEF Bangladesh Representative Sheldon Yett, R, said in a statement.

So far, 232,377 people have been evacuated to different shelters in the district as of noon on Sunday (6:00 GMT), not including Rohingya refugees, Mainuddin Milky, control room officer in the Cox’s Bazar district, told EFE.

The ethnic Myanmar refugees, of Bengali ethnicity and Muslim faith, have been relocated to safer areas within the camp itself, in schools, offices and other facilities.

The World Health Organization has 40 ambulances and 33 mobile medical teams on standby at Cox’s Bazar. EFE


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