IN PHOTOS: Rohingya refugees fish in troubled waters

Reuters

Posted at Jun 13 2018 09:38 AM

SHAMLAPUR, Bangladesh - Some Rohingya refugees who fled from Myanmar are finding work in the fishing industry in neighboring Bangladesh, earning a tiny daily income and occasional share of the catch, all under the official radar.

The Shamlapur refugee camp, near a fishing colony on one of the world's longest beaches, is home to about 10,000 Rohingya refugees, aid groups say, many driven out of Myanmar's Rakhine State by sectarian violence last year.

"We saved our lives by escaping here, so we are happy to be here," said Mohammed Yosuf, 20, who works as a fisherman, earning about 200 or 300 taka ($1.20 to $3.60) for each five-day trip.

Yosuf said he fled with his wife, Sobora Khatun, who was nine months' pregnant when they escaped after two months shackled in captivity. Their three-year-old son drowned in a river crossing, but baby daughter Rukia was born safely.

They are among nearly 700,000 Rohingya Muslims who fled a military crackdown, the United Nations and human rights groups say, almost all of them winding up in makeshift camps around the southern district of Cox's Bazar.

Rohingya refugees crew a fishing boat in the Bay of Bengal near Cox's Bazaar, Bangladesh, March 24, 2018. Although the refugees cannot work legally, some find jobs on fishing boats or help push them out to sea. Reuters

Rohingya refugees crew a fishing boat from Shamlapur beach heading out to the Bay of Bengal near Cox's Bazaar, Bangladesh. The boat is unstable in rough seas due to its shape when it hits the waves. Reuters

A Rohingya refugee woman slices fish for drying at Nazirartek fish drying yard near Cox's Bazaar. Two in five Rohingyas depend on a family member with an informal job in Shamlapur. Reuters

Rohingya refugee Asma Akter, 10, lifts bags of frozen fish from a delivery truck at Nazirartek fish drying yard in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. Reuters

Rohingya refugees pass baskets of dried out mud from the riverbed to raise the ground level of the camp in preparation for monsoon season, in Shamlapur refugee camp. Reuters

Rohingya refugees leave Shamlapur beach with fish at night to return to Shamlapur camp in Cox's Bazaar. Reuters

Rohingya refugee women carry baskets of dried out mud from the riverbed to help raise the ground level of the camp in preparation for monsoon season, in Shamlapur refugee camp in Cox's Bazaar, Bangladesh. Reuters

A Rohingya refugee is seen in Balukhali refugee camp at dawn near Cox's Bazaar, Bangladesh. Reuters