The archbishop of Dhaka went to Tumbro and Ghumdhum. He listened to the stories of violence and misery. The cardinal appealed to world leaders. The Catholic Church has collected a million taka (10,200 euros) for the emergency.
Bandarban (AsiaNews) - Card. Patrick D'Rozario, the highest ecclesial authority in Bangladesh, has visited two Rohingya refugee camps in the Bandarban district. Thousands of Muslims have fled to here from nearby Myanmar. Addressing them, he said: "The Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina, is with you. Charitable people are with you. Let us pray to Almighty God for a solution to your crisis. "
The visit confirms the churches closeness to the people who are battered by both sides in the ocnflict - the army and militants of the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (Arsa) - already expressed in a recent letter of appeal.
The archbishop of Dhaka went to the Tumbro and Ghumdhum camps, where he heard stories of persecution of several displaced persons, many of whom are elderly and ill. One of them is Sona Mehen, 65, who said: "The Myanmar army burned my house. The military killed my son. I am very old and I cannot walk. " The cardinal shook hands with many people and was visibly moved by their misery. Such as when he met Nur Mahammad, just eight years old, who told him that his father was killed by soldiers. “Here we do not eat enough now. "
Meeting with journalists at the end of the visit, the archbishop of Dhaka said, "Something inhumane is happening. The Rohingya have lived in Myanmar for generations, but have no citizenship. It is not a positive note for Myanmar. The most important issue is why they do not have citizenship. " Then he appealed to all world leaders to resolve the crisis together. "It is the responsibility of all," he said.
Subsequently, the cardinal met with Md Ali Hossain, deputy commissar of the district of Cox's Bazar, one of the most affected by the humanitarian emergency, to whom he handed over 1 million taka (about 10,200 euros) collected by the Catholic Church in donations. Finally, he confirmed a greater commitment by Caritas Bangladesh, which through Chittagong's offices is already delivering relief and first aid.
The pontiff will visit Bangladesh from 30 November to 2 December. "The pope expressed the desire to come two years ago, when the refugee crisis had not broken out." Over 620,000 Muslims have fled the Rakhine State in Myanmar.
The Holy See's press office publishes the detailed itinerary of the papal journey. The various meetings with political personalities, such as Aung San Suu Kyi, and those with Catholic communities and representatives of religions. Laity and coexistence between religions. The Churches of Bangladesh and Myanmar "peripheries" and "insignificant", poor and evangelizing, reflections of Pope Francis's dream. Suggestions for India and China.
The pontiff is expected from 30 November to 2 December. This will be the first visit after John Paul II's visit in 1986. It is a state visit as well as a pastoral visit for Christians and Muslims that will stimulate dialogue between religious communities. An interview with the archbishop of Dhaka follows.
Dhaka's government grants permission to bring food and basic necessities for 60 days. The social arm of the Catholic Church collaborates with the World Food Program in the Ukhiya refugee camp. Every day volunteers distribute beans, hot meals, sugar and oil.
Pope Francis will travel to Bangladesh from 30 November to 2 December. The themes chosen for the trip are harmony and peace. Parishes receive directions to prepare the faithful. PIME Superior: "Christians are the hope of the country, our work is for the benefit of all."