Bangladesh pushes back 59 Rohingyas

Chittagong (The Daily Star/ANN) - Bangladesh Coast Guard members drove away 59 Rohingyas who came sailing on three boats up the Naf river on Friday night.

Trying to get to the land in Teknaf upazila, 45 of them were stopped near Jelepara at Shahparir Dweep when the members were patrolling the area around 9pm.

Thirty-three of them were males, 10 females and two children, said Lieutenant Badruddoza, officer-in-charge of the Teknaf contingent of the Coast Guard.

In another drive, a team of coastguards held 14 Rohingyas - 1 male, 5 females and 8 children - near Kerontoli in Teknaf around 9:15pm as they were heading to the shore on a boat.

The coastguards provided all the Rohingyas with food and water before sending them back to Myanmar on the three boats two hours later, said Badruddoza.

According to Coast Guard data, as many as 1,585 Rohingyas have been sent back to the country since June 11 last year.

The highest number of Rohingyas expelled from Bangladeshi territory in one month was 970 in June last year, when sectarian violence broke out in the Rakhine state of Myanmar.

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