Published: Fri, September 06, 2019
Electronics | By Kelly Massey

Bangladesh bans mobile phone services in Rohingya camps

Bangladesh bans mobile phone services in Rohingya camps

The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulator Commission has directed the mobile phone operators to ensure in seven days that the Rohingya refugees do not get access to mobile phones.

The BTRC also reiterated the directive issued in October a year ago asking all mobile operators to restrict their networks in the Bangladesh-Myanmar border areas as well as block networks in and around Rohingya camps.

The notice was issued following allegations that the telecom operators were providing SIM cards to Rohingyas defying government ban.

Toughening its stance further, Bangladesh today banned two more worldwide NGOs for allegedly instigating Rohingya refugees to oppose repatriation to Myanmar. "We've asked the operators to take action to stop it", he said, saying the decision was made on "security grounds".

"Many refugees are using mobile phones in the camps".

Many Rohingya rely on remittances sent by their diaspora and usually receive phone calls informing them of the money transfers.

Earlier, on Saturday, the government had barred 41 NGOs from undertaking any activity in Cox's Bazar Rohingya camps for their alleged role in encouraging Rohingyas not to accept repatriation to Myanmar.

Bangladesh orders telecom operators to stop services in Rohingya camps

"It will definitely make a positive impact".

"The Rohingya are not entitled to use Bangladeshi SIM cards. I believe criminal activities will surely come down", he said.

The US ambassador said that his government was beside Bangladesh in the Rohingya situation and would continue the support.

Rohingya refugees have mentioned the new bloodshed has created an environment of worry within the camp, the place safety has been tightened. Last month, a ruling party member was killed in the area and police blamed Rohingya for the murder.

Rights teams have up to now accused Bangladesh police of extrajudicial killings. He further stated that Bangladesh's move to limit communications within the Rohingya camps will serve to push them towards negative coping habits, be it crime, violence or extremism.

The two global locations signed a repatriation settlement in November 2017 however a primary be offering to go back used to be rejected by way of refugee camp leaders in October. The Rohingya are not recognised as an official minority by the Myanmar government, which considers them Bengali interlopers despite many families having lived in the country for generations.

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