Switzerland provides additional 10 million francs for Rohingya refugees

Press releases, 15.02.2019

In 2019, Switzerland will provide CHF 10 million and deploy experts from the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit (SHA) to help tackle the Rohingya refugee crisis in Bangladesh. The humanitarian crisis in eastern Bangladesh, a region that has taken in large numbers refugees, remains acute. The international Joint Response Plan seeks to raise USD 920 million to meet basic needs.

A woman and her child stand in front of a provisional cabin in the refugee camp Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh.
Since 2017, hundreds of thousands of people from northern Myanmar have been fleeing violence, most of them women and children. © Keystone

At the launch of the Joint Response Plan in Geneva, Switzerland reaffirmed its commitment to the efforts to address the refugee crisis in Bangladesh. It is now providing CHF 10 million to step up its own relief efforts, focusing on water and sanitation as well as protection and disaster risk reduction. Switzerland will also dispatch additional SHA experts to take part in the relief operation in Cox's Bazar district. Six Swiss experts are currently on the ground, seconded to UN organisations or helping to coordinate Swiss Humanitarian Aid projects.

With this latest contribution, Switzerland has committed a total of CHF 30 million to the operation to provide humanitarian relief to Rohingya refugees. Switzerland has also called on Myanmar and Bangladesh to ensure the voluntary return in safety and dignity of displaced Rohingyas to their homes. As a prerequisite for a lasting solution, Switzerland calls for compliance with international law, in particular for the protection and safeguarding of human rights in Myanmar's Rakhine state, the Rohingyas' home region.

The Joint Response Plan, drawn up by over 130 humanitarian organisations, seeks to raise USD 920 million to meet two urgent objectives: first, to meet the basic needs of some 900,000 refugees for shelter, food, healthcare, water and sanitation and, second, to support local communities whose living conditions have worsened since the refugee crisis began because of increasing deforestation, waste production and use of water and other resources.

Further information:

Humanitarian Aid: saving lives and alleviating suffering
SDC's engagement in Bangladesh

Address for enquiries:

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Federal Department of Foreign Affairs