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Bangladesh Myanmar Attacks

UN says 146,00 people have now fled Myanmar's violence


Updated September 07, 2017 04:04 PM EDT

The United Nations says 146,000 people have now fled the violence in Myanmar's Rakine state since Aug. 25.

Rohingya Muslims have been fleeing their homes amid reported clashes with both government forces and Buddhist mobs.

U.N. spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said Wednesday that the refugees are "hungry and malnourished" and that the World Food Program is asking for $11.3 million to help feed them.

Kefayet Ullah is a Rohingya Muslim who fled to Bangladesh about 10 days ago after members of the Myanmar military apparently killed his brother and sister-in-law in front of their two-year old son.

“They (military) entered our house... they took all the valuables from the house and asked for more money... When my brother told them nothing we have, at once they wanted to grab my sister-in-law. My brother told them not to do that. Immediately they stabbed my brother. After that two soldiers came and shot my brother,” Ullah told the Associated Press.

His nephew was spared. He found him laying next to his dead parents bodies.

Kefayet Ullah heard the gruesome details of the deaths from a cousin who hid in the bushes as the attack began.

The 32-year-old Rohingya refugee couldn't stand the thought of abandoning the bodies of his loved ones behind. So him and his cousin carried his brother’s corpse on their back as they ran across the border into Bangladesh.

Now many people are calling for Aung San Suu Kyi the first and incumbent state counselor and leader of the National League for Democracy of Myanmar considered the country's de facto leader, to be stripped of her Nobel Peace Prize.

Thousands of Rohingya refugees have crossed into Bangladesh, fleeing violence in western Myanmar, the UNHCR said Saturday.

Both Myanmar's security officials and insurgents from the Rohingya ethnic minority are accusing each other of burning down villages and committing atrocities in the country's Rakhine state, The Associated Press reports. Violence broke out on Aug. 25 when insurgents attacked Myanmar police to protect the minority group.

As a result, the military began conducting "clearance operations" to find the insurgents. According to the country's military, nearly 400 people have died in armed clashes.

The violence has sent refugees fleeing on foot and by boat.

"Roughly 60,000 have arrived in Bangladesh since the violence erupted on Aug. 25," said U.N. Refugee Agency spokeswoman Vivian Tan.

Satellite imagery published by Human Rights Watch (HRW) shows that hundreds of buildings across the Rakhine state have been destroyed since Aug. 25.

"This new satellite imagery shows the total destruction of a Muslim village, and prompts serious concerns that the level of devastation in northern Rakhine State may be far worse than originally thought,” said Phil Robertson, Human Rights Watch's deputy Asia director.

The Red Cross has sent teams to refugee camps to assess the refugees' needs.

"We hope to start supplying water and food soon," said spokeswoman Misada Saif.

Refugees flee violence in Myanmar

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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