Cox’s Bazar has been one of WFP’s largest Asia operations since August 2017 when more than 700,000 Rohingya refugees began fleeing repression and violence in Rakhine State, Myanmar. The Danish government was one of the first donors to support WFP in meeting the urgent humanitarian needs of the Rohingya refugees. Denmark has allocated US$ 13 million to WFP’s efforts in relation to the crisis since August 2017 and remains committed to supporting those affected with both humanitarian and development assistance.
During their two-day visit to Cox’s Bazar Tørnæs and Beasley saw first-hand WFP’s general food assistance programmes, disaster risk reduction work, nutrition centres and school feeding, as well as site management and engineering work carried out by WFP together with the International Organisation of Migration and the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR.
The Minister stressed the need for further cooperation, dialogue, and sustained efforts from the international community: “‘It has been one year since I last visited these camps. I am pleased to see positive changes. Indeed, the resilience demonstrated by the Rohingya community is evident to us all. I am impressed with the results of the combined efforts of the international community and the Government of Bangladesh.”
“There is of course much more to be done. Yet, I must express appreciation for the work the World Food Programme is carrying out in support of 870,000 refugees with protection, food, and shelter. I also commend the efforts by the Government of Bangladesh supporting the Rohingya refugees. Denmark remains committed to stand by Bangladesh,” Tørnæs said.
Beasley said: “For the past year, I have been haunted by the stories I heard here in Cox’s Bazar from people who survived unspeakable persecution in Myanmar. Returning to these camps now I am heartened by the obvious improvements, and am more determined than ever that the World Food Programme will stand with those in need. More work needs to be done to support the Rohingya people and local Bangladeshi communities. The international community needs to work with Bangladesh to give the Rohingya children not just hope for a better future, but also the tools to thrive, including food, health and education.”
“This crisis must not be forgotten. I am grateful to the people of Bangladesh for all that has been done to offer sanctuary to those who fled Myanmar, and I am grateful to the financial support and partnership of Denmark that has allowed WFP to continue its work here,” Beasley said.
The joint visit to Bangladesh underlined the strategic cooperation between the Danish Government and the World Food Programme to promote food security particularly in vulnerable countries and contexts to achieve Zero Hunger by 2030, and on promoting partnerships to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
About Danish Humanitarian Assistance and Development Cooperation: Denmark is supporting Rohingyas in Myanmar and Bangladesh through several partners including the WFP, UNHCR, ICRC, IOM, Danish Refugee Council and other NGOs in programmes for a total value of US$ 49 million in humanitarian assistance. In addition to the projects led by the WFP, the Danish Minister for Development Cooperation also visited other Danish government-supported humanitarian projects on protection, food, and shelter for the refugees. Additionally, Denmark has amended its bilateral country programme by allocating a further US$ 12.7 million to increase resistance among local host communities impacted by the mass migration.
About WFP: The United Nations World Food Programme – saving lives in emergencies and changing lives for millions through sustainable development. WFP works in more than 80 countries around the world, feeding people caught in conflict and disasters, and laying the foundations for a better future.
For more information please contact:
Maherin Ahmed, WFP/Dhaka, Mob. +880 1755642160 Maherin.Ahmed@wfp.org
Silke Buhr, WFP/Rome, Mob. +393400600590 Silke.Buhr@wfp.org
Maria Westh, Press Advisor – The Minister for Development Cooperation, Direct: +45 33920678, Mobile: +45 50778664, firstname.lastname@example.org