Abu Jaffar, 60, conducts his evening prayer in a rice field next to thousands of Rohingya refugees who have been waiting all day to enter the camps in Cox's Bazar after crossing the Naf River from Myanmar into Bangladesh. He made the same crossing in 1992 and has lived nearby since then. After crossing into the field to help the refugees, the Boarder Guard Bangladesh (BGB) did not believe him when he tried to explain that he was not coming from Myanmar and told him he could not leave the area.
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Rohingya refugees huddle in a muddy field in a monsoon rain after crossing the Naf River from Myanmar into Bangladesh. Many of them walked for weeks to get here, some with gun or knife wounds, and had to wait all day and into the night in this field before being allowed into the camps in Cox's Bazar.
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An elderly Rohingya refugee is held by a family member as he struggles to swallow a small amount of water. The Boarder Guard Bangladesh allowed him to leave the field in which they were being held for processing in order to receive emergency medical treatment at a makeshift MSF clinic.
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A young child is carried in a bucket as thousands of Rohingya refugees make their way along narrow, muddy paths through a rice field after crossing the Naf River from Myanmar into Bangladesh.
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Thousands of Rohingya refugees struggle to make their way along narrow, muddy paths through a rice field after crossing the Naf River from Myanmar into Bangladesh. Some chose to try and swim through the water to get ahead or slipped down the muddy embankment.
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The feet of Rohingya refugees are seen crossing a narrow wooden plank as they make their way along narrow, muddy paths through a rice field after crossing the Naf River from Myanmar into Bangladesh. On this day an estimated 30,000 refugees made the crossing. Due to the narrow passages, going was slow and the temperatures were incredibly hot. Evening saw a monsoon rain come to the field. Many were suffering from exhaustion and malnutrition, while others had gunshot and knife wounds.
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A Boarder Guard Bangladesh (BGB) officer swats at Rohingya refugees with a stick to keep them from going any further in an attempt to control the tide of people coming across the Naf River from Myanmar into Bangladesh.
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Rohingya women and girls wait in a food distribution line in a camp outside Cox's Bazar in Bangladesh.
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An elderly Rohingya woman makes her way along a road through the refugee camps outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. Narrow roads, over crowding and careless driving means that accidents between vehicles and those walking next to them are common.
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A Rohingya refugee sits in the shade waiting to be given a small plot of land in one of the refugee camps outside Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. New arrivals can wait for days to be given a small section of camp on which to build a makeshift lean-to.
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Rohingya refugees walk through a field in a camp outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.
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A young Rohingya girl waits out a monsoon rain in a camp outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. The heavy rains turned the hills into slippery, muddy slides and the valleys into ponds. Every inch of land had to be cleared quickly and the rainy season created slippery hills, lots of mud and poor sanitation.
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A Rohingya man makes his way along a muddy road in a camp outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. Hundreds of thousands of refugees, heavy rains and many passing vehicles turned the roads through the camps into treacherous walkways.
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Rohingya refugees are loaded into a truck late at night for transportation to the camps outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.
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Rohingya refugees make their way through the desolate landscape of the camps outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.
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Makeshift huts are seen in a Rohingya refugee camp outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. These are just a small handful of the hundreds of thousands of tents and lean-tos setup throughout the hills and valleys.
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Rohingya refugees sell and buy vegetables in a camp outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.
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A Rohingya woman cooks in her hut in a camp outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.
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A young Rohingya boy plays with a makeshift kite in a camp outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.
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Rohingya refugees move through one of the camps outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. In the distance the frame for a drill can be seen that will be used to make a water well.
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Many small shops were quickly established and people sold whatever they could get their hands on, as the refugees settled into their new homes.
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Rohingya refugees make their way along a corrugated metal fence in one of the camps outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. Some people wait in the shadows to receive access to the medical care inside.
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Rohingya refugees find space to sit or rest wherever they can in a hospital in Cox's Bazar. Many suffered from exhaustion or malnutrition, while others suffered from gunshot or knife wounds, burns and worse, not to mention psychological trauma.
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The sun sets on a Rohingya refugee camp outside of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.
The Rohingya people have long been prosecuted and persecuted in Myanmar. The Myanmar government denies their right to exist, insisting that they are Bengali and have no claim to citizenship. For years, tens of thousands were forced into refugee camps in Sittwe in Rakhine State. They had one full time doctor for over 140,000 people. In 2014 the government banned foreign aid groups from operating in the camps. Rohingya that were able to remain in their villages lived in fear. This trend finally peaked in 2017 as the Myanmar military openly burned villages and opened fire on Rohingya, forcing them to flee in terror. More than half a million crossed the boarder into Bangladesh after walking for weeks, many bearing knife or gun wounds or worse. Stories of torture and rape were rampant. To this day they remain in camps outside Cox's Bazar with no place to go. Though the Myanmar government has offered to repatriate them, none have volunteered to go back, opting instead to stay in the crowded makeshift camps. The fear of what might happen to them should they return to Myanmar is too great.