23 April 2020 | Save the Children
In response to the statement released today by the International Development Committee (IDC) on its inquiry into the Rohingya crisis Keyan Salarkia, Conflict and Humanitarian Advisor at Save the Children, said:
“Rohingya children have faced unimaginable violence and rights abuses in Myanmar and the camps of Cox’s Bazar are no place for a child to grow up. Children are at risk of exploitation and abuse, many are struggling with their mental health and there is hardly any education. Now, as COVID-19 threatens the camps they face the potential of yet another catastrophe.
“Wherever we are in the world, we all want to help each other through this crisis, and today’s comments from the International Development Committee are extremely welcome. It sends a message to the Rohingya people that the British Parliament has not forgotten them. While it is essential that all actors – governments, UN bodies and humanitarian agencies – do everything in their power to protect children and their communities from COVID-19, ultimately the solution to the crisis lies in political change, reform, and justice. The Foreign Secretary can and must instruct the FCO to take action at the UN Security Council. That is the only body which has the authority to refer the situation to the International Criminal Court and to enforce the measures set by the International Court of Justice.
“Holding the perpetrators of these crimes to account is a vital part of any plan to help Rohingya children recover and rebuild their lives. We need action to address the systems, policies and structures which harm Rohingya children in both Myanmar and Bangladesh. The longer that takes, the greater the impact will be on Rohingya children, and the harder it will be to undo.”
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