Turkish charity distributes meat to 32,000 Rohingyas


A Turkish charity has distributed meat to 32,000 Rohingya Muslims in restive Rakhine state of Myanmar during the Muslim festival of Eid-al Adha, or feast of sacrifice.

Turkey's Cansuyu Charity and Solidarity Organization has sacrificed cattle at villages of western Rakhine state's capital Sittwe and refugee camps, the organization's Rakhine State Aid Coordinator Bayram Numan Koksal told Anadolu Agency on Monday.

The officers of the organization visited the villages one-by-one under adverse circumstances and poor muddy roads and also distributed pocket money, balloons and sweets to the children.

According to Koksal, there are currently 1.5 million Muslims residing in the region.

"We want to say that we will remain with our brothers forever," he said.

Ibrahim Ali, the organization's Rakhine state advisor, said they were happy about Turkish charity organizations' works in the region.

"The people in this region are in serious need," he added.

On Aug. 25, violence erupted in the Rakhine state when the country's security forces launched an operation against the Rohingya Muslim community. It triggered a fresh influx of refugees towards neighboring Bangladesh, though the country sealed off its border to refugees.

Media reports said Myanmar security forces used disproportionate force, displacing thousands of Rohingya villagers and destroying their homes with mortars and machine guns.

The region has seen simmering tension between its Buddhist and Muslim populations since communal violence broke out in 2012.

A crackdown launched last October in Maungdaw, where Rohingya make up the majority, led to a UN report on human rights violations and crimes against humanity by security forces.

The UN documented mass gang rape, killings -- including infants and young children -- brutal beatings, and disappearances. Rohingya representatives have said approximately 400 people have been slain during the crackdown.

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