In Myanmar, before she fled the country, Rashida was raped and witnessed the brutal murder of her baby son. When she crossed the border into Bangladesh and arrived in Cox’s Bazar, she was at rock bottom. All she could do was hope that the nightmare she was living through would someday come to an end.
Despite her best efforts, Rashida’s flashbacks, compounded by the grim conditions in the camp, are making it hard for her to recover. Like so many other Rohingya refugees, she feels stuck and despondent, even as she yearns with all her heart for a return to some kind of normal life.
“Every day I think, how will we survive here and until when? When I will I live in my own house again?” the 27-year-old says, as she sits on the cement floor of her makeshift home, a bamboo hut covered in plastic sheeting.
MSF first met Rashida in 2017. At the time, a knife wound to her neck, inflicted when she was attacked in the village of Tula Toli, was still very visible. She couldn’t hold back the tears as she recounted how, on 25 and 26 August that year, members of the Myanmar security forces attacked her village and smashed in the skull of her one-month-old “dear son” right before her eyes. She also recounted how she lay still, pretending to be dead, after her assailants raped her and slashed her body with knives. All around her lay the bodies of other Rohingya villagers killed that day.