Ceasefire ends tomorrow, say Rohingya militants


More than half a million Rohingyas have fled to Bangladesh since a counter-insurgency offensive by Myanmar's army in the wake of militant attacks on security forces in late August.

The Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) did not say what action it would take after the ceasefire ends at midnight on Monday, but it was "determined to stop the tyranny and oppression" waged against the Rohingya people.

Bangladesh initially kept its border closed after violence broke out in Myanmar's western Rakhine, but later made a decision to open it up to Rohingyas on humanitarian grounds.

Myanmar's government spokesman did not respond to requests for comment on Saturday but has previously said the country does not "negotiate with terrorists".

The shadowy, poorly-armed Arsa tipped northern Rakhine into crisis when it ambushed police posts on Aug 25.

Geneva/Yangon - The United Nations (UN) braced on Friday for a possible "further exodus" of Muslim Rohingya refugees from Myanmar into Bangladesh six weeks after the world's fastest-developing refugee emergency began, UN humanitarian aid chief said.

The Bangladesh government revealed earlier this week about 5,000 Rohingay Muslims are crossing the border daily.

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An average of 2,000 Rohingya cross the border everyday for safety making refugee situation in south-eastern Bangladeshi district of Cox's Bazar more complex, according to a statement issued by International Organization for Migration (IOM).

The Rohingya muslims are one of the minorities of Burma, a majority buddhist.

Hasina said that at one stage after the forced exodus of Rohingyas the Myanmar "pretended like they wanted a war".

Scores of Rohingya villages have been torched. He added that 331,000 Rohingya Muslims had already built makeshift shelters in the area where the construction of the proposed camp would be carried out.

Ms Hasina's assurances on Saturday came as a top United Nations official said that Bangladesh's plan to build the world's biggest refugee camp for 800,000-plus Rohingya was unsafe because overcrowding could heighten the risks of deadly diseases spreading quickly.

By concentrating too many people in one space, a refugee camp of such size leaves enough scope for deadly diseases to spread like wildfire. Two thousand acres (790 hectares) of land next to the existing Kutupalong camp were set aside last month for the new Rohingya arrivals.