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Trying to escape the rapesin the refugee camp, teenagerRohingya is missing.

Atualizado: 29 de abr. de 2021

Noor Kayas is a 16-year-old girl from the persecuted Rohingya ethnicity of Myanmar, who lived in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, the largest refugee camp in the world. On February 11, 2021, in a desperate attitude, she decided to flee to Malaysia in a small overcrowded wooden boat with 87 people, 65 of these women and girls.

The reason that led Noor Kayas to run away without telling anyone, including her mother, was the terrible fear of becoming yet another victim of the huge wave of rapes that has plagued women and children in Cox's Bazaar camp. Sexual crimes against Rohingya refugees grew exponentially during the pandemic, leaving children, youth, and women in a situation of total vulnerability.

However, the escape that would be an escape for Noor has become a terrible nightmare. Five days after departure, the boat's engine stopped. Through a cell phone, Noor was able to reach her mother, Gule Jaan, for help. With few supplies and water on board, everyone feared the worst.

Through pressure from human rights organizations, the boat was located adrift in Indian waters, a long way from its destination. However, only after 48 hours did the Indian government send food and water but refused to rescue the castaways, in an explicit breach of international maritime convention. Because of this delay, several people had already died.

The whereabouts of the boat today are unknown. It is not known whether it sank or whether there are survivors.

The situation of refugees in Cox’s Bazar is very serious. Criminals take advantage of the lack of security and invade huts during the night, attacking women and children.

Because of this, according to UNHCR, the flight of women and girls has increased. Human traffickers, in turn, take advantage of their fragility to sell a solution that, for most, means death. Even the women who made it to Malaysia report that they were raped during the trip on the boat.

Pray that Noor's vessel will be found and that the refugees will recover from the traumas experienced there. Pray for the Rohingya people, especially women and children in the Cox ’Bazar refugee camp. Pray that the wave of rapes will end and that there will be security. Pray that a definitive solution will be found for these people and that they will meet the Prince of Peace.

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