St Albans MP Anne Main continues to campaign in Parliament for refugees

St Albans MP Anne Main speaking about the Rohingya debate.

St Albans MP Anne Main speaking about the Rohingya debate. - Credit: Archant

St Albans MP Anne Main described the blight of Rohingya refugees as “a burning injustice” during her continued campaign against the humanitarian crisis.

Alongside Bethnal Green and Bow MP Rushanara Ali, Mrs Main secured a debate in Parliament about Rohingya refugees - a topic she has been urging the UK Government to address.

Rohingya people, a Muslim ethic minority group who say they are historical descendants of Arab traders, have been fleeing from Myanmar to Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand after attacks on their communities.

The Myanmar government regards them as illegal immigrants.

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees there were tens of thousands of Rohingya refugees living in Bangladeshi camps before August 2017.

It says more than 730,000 are estimated to have arrived in Bangladesh since then and the UN has described this as the world’s fastest growing refugee crisis.

Mrs Main said: “This is a burning injustice. I have seen the vast tide of suffering endured by those people in the camps.

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“Kutupalong, one of the camps I visited, now has a population of over 700,000. That is the same size as the city of Glasgow. The sheer scale of the crisis is enormous.”

She also highlighted the blight of pregnant women in the camps, as only one in five have access to medical facilities.

Although the government has committed £129 million in aid to the crisis, Mrs Main pressed for further action.

Adding: “The UN report says that this is an ‘ongoing genocide’. That word, ongoing, should fill us with terror. This is still happening today.”

Mrs Main’s motion reads: “This house is deeply concerned by the ongoing humanitarian crisis facing Rohingya refugees; agrees with the findings of the UN fact-finding mission that genocide and war crimes have been carried out against the Rohingya by senior Myanmar military figures; calls on the government to pursue an ICC referral for Myanmar through the UN Security Council; and further calls on the government to put pressure on the United Nations to prevent the repatriation of the Rohingya from Bangladesh to unsafe conditions in Myanmar and to continue to provide assistance to Rohingya refugees.”