Dhaka, Oct 19 (EFE).- A Rohingya youth was slain in Bangladesh, the fourth murder of the refugee community members this month, officials said on Wednesday, amid tensions on the Myanmar border.
The border tension has driven several armed gangs in the southeast of Bangladesh.
The latest murder occurred on Tuesday when a group of unidentified attackers killed Syed Hossain in the Ukhyia Rohingya camp in the Cox’s Bazar district.
Hossain had his throat slit before he was shot and died on the spot, said police spokesperson Faruk Ahmed.
Assailants hacked to death two Rohingya community leaders in the same area on Saturday.
Earlier on Oct.4, an 11-year-old Rohingya girl was shot dead and another woman injured in the Balukhali Rohingya camp in Ukhiya when a group of assailants opened fire in a market area.
“The reason for the rise in murders is simple. Of late, criminals have been living in their hideouts in the Myanmar and Zero Point areas. Due to tension in Myanmar, they returned to their camps. They were trying to regain their control in camp,” said Faruk.
Faruk said most of the targets of the criminals are peace-loving Rohingyas, including community leaders.
“It is difficult to prevent target killing. We are giving security to people who need it. Also, we took several measures, including setting up closed circuit cameras in areas that criminals mostly use,” he said.
In the three months between July and September, at least 12 Rohingyas, including several leaders, were murdered, Cox’s Bazar police chief Mahfuzul Islam told EFE.
“Tension on the border is one reason, of course. But a few other factors might be involved as well. One million people live in a small area. This is a frustrated group of people who see no future for themselves. It led to some disputes among themselves,” he said.
The Myanmar Army and rebel Arakan Amy have been reportedly involved in heavy fighting in Rakhine state since August, which saw mortar shells often landing in Bangladesh territory.
A Rohingya boy was killed and five others were injured after a mortar shell fired from Myanmar exploded near a refugee camp in Bangladesh on Sep.16.
An Arakan Rohingya Society for Peace and Human Rights leader, who is under protective custody, told EFE that the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) might be behind the recent killings to block the Rohingya repatriation process.
“The ARSA does not want any wise person or community leader to have their say in the camp,” he said.
Rights activist Mohammad Humaid said the link between Rohingya leaders and ARSA might be behind the growing number of murders in the camp.
“Many armed groups are allowed by majhis (Rohingya leaders) in the camps. They have good coordination with them. Most of the head majhis are connected with the ARSA since ARSA administrated the camps before (top Rohingya leader) Mohibullah’s murder,” he said.
Mohibullah was shot dead in a refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar in September 2021.
Family members of Mohibullah blamed the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) for the murder.
However, Bangladesh does not recognize the ARSA presence on its soil.