Police in Bangladesh have been beating Rohingya refugees at the checkpoints of the various camps, said a report by Human Rights Watch (HRW).
The HRW, in its report, claimed to have spoken with five Rohingya refugees who described being beaten by the Armed Police Battalion (APBn) officers and other officials at camp checkpoints over the past few days.
The HRW report has said that in two camps, Bangladesh authorities have introduced a draconian permission application for movement within the camp areas, which some refugees compared to the oppressive conditions they faced back in Myanmar. The authorities are reportedly planning to institute the policy across all camps.
"The crackdown follows the temporary detention of 656 Rohingya on May 4 and 5 for celebrating the Eid ul-Fitr holiday outside the camp confines, as well as months of worsening restrictions on Rohingya's freedom to move, work, and study," the report read.
"We live in camps surrounded by barbed wire fencing, with no options for celebration, so we went [to a nearby beach] to celebrate Eid. But they detained us, and then charged us each Tk200-500 [US$3-6] for transportation back to camp," the HRW report quoted a Rohingya refugee.
HRW report quoted two Rohingyas saying that the police beat them when they tried to get critical medicine for their parents.
"My mother has 'kala jaundice' [hepatitis C]," one told us. "Yesterday, I was stopped by APBn when I went to the Lambasia checkpoint with her medical documents and prescription. The only way to buy the medicine is from a pharmacy outside the camp, but they didn't allow me to leave. The APBn beat me, and I fled in fear."
"Governments have an international legal obligation to ensure medical care for refugees at least equivalent to that available to the general population. The checkpoint harassment is seemingly part of the authorities' efforts to coerce refugees to relocate to the remote island of Bhasan Char or to return to Myanmar," the report stated.
HRW called the donors funding the refugee response, including the United States, United Kingdom, and European Union, to urge Bangladesh to reverse "these harsh restrictions before the refugees' lives closely mirror the constraints and harassment they fled."