Turkey, Asia - pacific

Turkey plans to enhance skills of Rohingya Muslims

Turkey's Diyanet Foundation to establish needlecraft and soap production workshops for Rohingya Muslims in Bangladesh

19.04.2018
Turkey plans to enhance skills of Rohingya Muslims

Ankara

By Dildar Baykan

COX’S BAZAR, Bangladesh

The Turkiye Diyanet Foundation (TDV), which comes under Turkey's Religious Affairs Directorate, will establish needlecraft and soap production workshops for Rohingya Muslims in Bangladesh.

"We came up with an idea of providing jobs for people here so that they can at least have jobs after they return home when the crisis ends.

"Under this framework, we started the construction of a needlecraft workshop on the Turkish Hill at the Kutupalong Camp [in Cox's Bazar]," Oguzhan Atsiz, deputy expert of foreign humanitarian aid at the charity, told Anadolu Agency on Tuesday.

The Rohingya, described by the UN as the world's most persecuted people, have faced heightened fears of attack since dozens were killed in communal violence in 2012.

Since Aug. 25, 2017, some 750,000 refugees, mostly children and women, fled Myanmar when Myanmar forces launched a crackdown on the minority Muslim community, according to the UN. At least 9,000 Rohingya were killed in Rakhine state from Aug. 25 to Sept. 24, according to Doctors Without Borders.

In a report published on Dec. 12, the global humanitarian organization said the deaths of 71.7 percent or 6,700 Rohingya were caused by violence. They include 730 children below the age of 5.

Atsiz said the charity will also establish a soap production workshop for Rohingya Muslims.

"Here, soap production will be made by those who stay in the camp. The soaps will be distributed freely to the people for meeting their needs," he added.

Atsiz added the Rohingya Muslims will in this way acquire a profession and also soap production will contribute to solving hygiene problems.

He added the charity will also establish a social complex, including a mosque on the Turkish Hill, saying: "Our aim is to contribute to both their social needs and education rather than feeding the people."

TDV has delivered humanitarian aid worth $3.7 million to Rohingya Muslims since the crisis began in 2012.

The foundation is also sponsoring 4,134 Rohingya students studying at schools in Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Malaysia. TDV also supports 11 Rohingya students in Turkey.

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