Yesterday 22 October, an international donor conference on sustaining support for the Rohingya refugee response was held on the initiative of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the United States, the United Kingdom, and the European Union. Estonia is contributing €50 000 euros in support of addressing the Rohingya humanitarian crisis.
“Coping with this humanitarian crisis has become even more challenging during the global pandemic, which is why it is essential that the global community continues to show commitment to the plight of Rohingya refugees. Estonia commends the UNHCR’s tireless work in providing humanitarian assistance,” said Minna-Liina Lind, Ambassador at Large for Human Rights and Migration representing Estonia.
According to the ambassador, the long-term solution to the crisis must be based on the safe, voluntary and dignified return of Rohingya refugees to their homes in Myanmar. To this end, the international community must work together to defend human rights and freedoms.
Estonia remains deeply concerned about the continuous reports of human rights violations in Myanmar, including in the Rakhine state. At the conference, the government of Myanmar was urged to respect the call for a global ceasefire of the UN Secretary-General, to address the root causes of violence and displacement in Rakhine state and create the conditions needed for the return of the Rohingya.
The donation will go to the UNHCR to help them continue their crucial work in providing humanitarian assistance. In total, $600 million was raised at the donor conference.
Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya were forced to leave Myanmar in 2017 due to a military operation. There are currently more than 800 000 Rohingya refugees living in the Cox’s Bazar region in Bangladesh, and hundreds of thousands are in India, Indonesia, Malaysia and other nearby countries. An estimated 600 000 Rohingya remain in the Rakhine state in Myanmar where they are facing violence and human rights violations.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia