Women and girls living in the Cox's Bazar refugee camp in Bangladesh are vulnerable to an increase in gender-based violence, as the cyclone and coronavirus threaten their security, the International Rescue Committee's Bangladesh director, Manish Agrawal, has said.
The sprawling camps of Cox's Bazar are home to nearly one million stateless Rohingya refugees. While the camps on Bangladesh's east coast aren't directly in the cyclone's path, they are likely to be hit by severe weather.
"Life could not be more precarious for the nearly half a million women and girls who are already trapped in their homes as well as the children who make up over half of the camp’s residents," Agrawal said.
"Many of them have experienced gender-based violence, often at the hands of their partners, and now they risk having their homes uprooted to be forced into more condensed spaces."
He added that an "unimaginable" strain would be put on relationships and families in the camp "and there is a real risk that gender-based violence will increase as the cyclone takes hold.”