At least 12,000 people were left without shelter following the inferno in Bangladesh
Rohingya refugees try to douse a major fire in their Balukhali camp at Ukhiya in Cox’s Bazar district, Bangladesh, Sunday, March 5, 2023. © AP Photo/Mahmud Hossain Opu
A fire which left thousands of Rohingya people homeless earlier this month at the world’s largest refugee camp in Bangladesh was a “planned act of sabotage” orchestrated by a criminal gang seeking control of the facility, a panel investigating the blaze has said.
An investigation has determined that the fire began at several locations in the camp simultaneously, according to government official Abu Sufian, who is heading a seven-member team probing the incident.
“At least five places caught fire within a short period of time,” Safian told Reuters on Sunday, also detailing that there had been clashes between rival gangs within the camp the previous day. Some refugees were also prevented from attempting to extinguish the blaze, he said.
“We recommend further investigation by the law-enforcement agency to identify the groups behind the incident,” Safian added.