United Nations fears "further exodus" of Muslim Rohingya into Bangladesh

Bangladesh health department to launch cholera vaccination for the Rohingya

The home minister said the government would nevertheless cooperate with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and other relevant global agencies in line with their humanitarian policies to give aid to the ethnic group.

Refugees in Bangladesh are packed into overcrowded United Nations and makeshift camps along the Myanmar border at increasing risk of disease.

The UN has described the government-sanctioned crackdown on Rohingya as "a textbook example of ethnic cleansing".

Refugees are living in camps near the border amid claims that hundreds of villages were torched in an apparent attempt to force Muslims out of the Buddhist-majority country.

Mark Lowcock, UN under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs, reiterated an appeal for access to the population in northern Rakhine, saying the situation was "unacceptable".

A Bangladesh minister gave details of the mega camp as Myanmar's army blamed Rohingya militants for setting fire to houses in troubled Rakhine state in recent days to intensify the exodus of the Muslim minority across the border, British newspaper Guardian reported.

Myanmar officials have said they attempted to reassure groups trying to flee to Bangladesh but could not stop people who were not citizens from leaving.

"Many of those arriving in Cox's Bazar are malnourished, over 200,000 urgently need food aid, including 145,000 children, " the IOM said.

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Bloody riots in 2012 forced over 100,000 Rohingya to flee to refugee camps in southeast Bangladesh, where many still live.

"We planned to administer them with 900,000 doses of oral cholera vaccines", Ukhiya upazila's Health and Family Planning Officer and Vaccination Programme's Coordinator Dr Mizbah Uddin Ahmed told BSS.

US lawmakers are calling for "full access" by journalists and aid workers to Myanmar's troubled Rakhine state.

Myanmar has come under global criticism for barring aid groups, journalists and other outsiders from independently traveling to the region to see the situation there.

Mr. Lowcock said he believed a "a high-level" United Nations team would be able to visit the area "in the next few days".

The OIC had made a stand that the refugees should be allowed to return safely to Myanmar and that Naypyidaw should take concrete measures to handle the deadly conflict which had occurred mainly in the Rakhine province which borders Bangladesh.

But Bangladesh minister Mahmood Ali said there had been a repatriation offer in what he called "friendly" talks in Dhaka with the representative of Myanmar's civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

However, Haque clarified that Bangladesh was willing to cooperate with Myanmar but at the same time wanted the refugees to "go back as soon as possible".

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