Bangladesh: ISCG Statement on Fire in Nayapara Registered Camp
Cox’s Bazar, 14 January 2021 A devastating fire broke out in Nayapara Registered Refugee Camp today. Some 3,500 persons lost their homes when the fire destroyed more than 550 shelters. A community centre and several shops were also completely destroyed. Very fortunately, no deaths or serious injuries have been reported, and the few people with minor injuries have been released after initial treatment.
The local fire department was at the scene and able to control and contain the fire within two hours The Refugee Relief and Repatriation Commissioner (RRRC), Nayapara Registered Camp-in-Charge (CiC), and law enforcement authorities also quickly mobilized to support the response in the area. The fire reportedly originated from an individual shelter; however, a full investigation is ongoing by the local authorities.
ISCG partners - UN and NGOs - have stepped in to assist the authorities in responding to the incident, with the support of Rohingya refugees who have been trained as safety unit volunteers (SUVs), Rohingya and Bangladeshi Cyclone Preparedness Programme (CPP) volunteers, and the wider local community. Medical care,shelter kits, non-food items, winter clothes, and emergency food assistance including hot meals are being delivered to the affected families, who are temporarily being accommodated with relatives and in emergency accommodation. The refugee community is helping to clear the debris.
UNHCR’s Head of Operations Marin Din Kajdomcaj said, “We have been on the ground since very early in the morning. We are working with our Government and NGO partners, other UN agencies, and Rohingya refugees to help people who have lost their homes and possessions during last night’s terrible fire in the refugee camp at Nayapara. “
The Government of Bangladesh and UN and NGO partners have put in place fire prevention measures, and the refugee community is trained and well-informed on fire safety practices. Effective response mechanisms are in place in case such fires erupt.
The rapid and effective response today has shown how preparing together and engaging the refugee communities can help reduce the serious injuries and loss of life.
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