Al-Azhar Undersecretary Abbas Shouman and head of the British Council Christopher Rodrigues - Egypt Today
CAIRO – 19 November 2017: Egypt’s top Sunni religious authority, Al-Azhar, rejects the establishment of refugee camps for Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, said Al-Azhar’s undersecretary Abbas Shouman on Sunday.
Shouman revealed in a press conference the details of Al-Azhar’s Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayyeb’s upcoming visit to Rohingya Camps in Bangladesh scheduled this November.
During the conference, Shouman and other speakers tackled the steps taken by Al-Azhar and Muslim Council Elders to support Rohingya refugees who are suffering from difficult humanitarian and living conditions.
During his visit, Tayyeb is expected to meet with senior officials and a number of scholars in Bangladesh, Shouman added.
A relief mission from Al-Azhar has begun packaging relief aid to be distributed to Rohingya Muslim refugees in Bangladesh in the coming days, he revealed.
Tayyeb has ordered a mission from the Medical and Relief Convoys Department of the Al-Azhar Sheikhdom, and a delegation from the General Secretariat of the Muslim Council of Elders to visit the Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh, and to also review their living conditions.
Al-Azhar is coordinating with Bangladeshi authorities to ensure that the aid convoy’s work runs smoothly.
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) said that since August 25, 2017, an estimated 613,000 Rohingya refugees had arrived in Bangladesh's Cox's Bazar, fleeing violence in Myanmar.
IOM said that the total Rohingya refugee population in the area has reached 826,000. Most of the refugees are women and children.
The Rohingya are a stateless Muslim minority that live in the mostly Buddhist country of Myanmar. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad Al-Hussein, has called the situation a "textbook example of ethnic cleansing."