Sittwe, Myanmar – A year and a half ago, an outbreak of violence between Buddhists and Rohingya Muslims here in Sittwe, Myanmar, started a struggle that drove nearly 150,000 Rohingya from their homes and into hastily put-together camps for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
Violent attacks continue to occur across Rakhine state, forcing more and more Rohingya into areas of refuge.
Conditions inside the dusty camps are sparse. Those lucky enough to have been allocated official aid buildings live with 10 families in each long house. Those that are still waiting to be assigned space from the government are left to create makeshift shelters out of whatever they can salvage, whether it be empty food bags or dried rice stalks.
Temperatures can vary drastically, from searing daytime heat to cold nights and monsoon rains.
Access to clean water and food is limited and, although toilets facilities were some of the first things to be built, raw sewage still runs through open waterways.
There are frequent disagreements between the police, largely members of the Burmese ethnic majority, and the Rohingya IDPs. These confrontations sometimes turn violent and are often only quelled when the army intervenes.