Bangladeshis Help the Rohingya: ‘It Is Only Natural’

Jackson Heights Islamic Center and Mosque President Mirza Rahman (Photo by Richard Loria via Queens Chronicle)

The Bangladeshi community in NYC has been raising funds in community centers and mosques and calling for action in support of the Rohingya, an ethnic minority in Myanmar, reports Richard Loria in Queens Chronicle. Since Aug. 25, following a military crackdown, more than 600,000 have fled to neighboring Bangladesh.

“Everybody is trying to raise funds in their own capacity,” said Mirza Rahman, president of the Jackson Heights Islamic Center and Mosque. “When we were young we saw the war [the Bangladeshi War of Independence], so when we see people going through something like this, it is only natural.”

Organizations like the Bangla Brigade play a crucial role in raising awareness. Others, like the Burma Task Force, are key to the fundraising process. The group’s latest campaign has already raised more than $277,000, and the hope is that it will reach $500,000 by Dec 1 (bit.ly/2jP3VDC).

“All our funds come from the community — individual donations and mosque donations,” said Adem Carroll, who directs the Burma Task Force branch in New York City. (…)

Go to Queens Chronicle for more from Carroll on “how to curb the violence itself” and the role businesses play, according to Rahman, in getting the government to act.

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