Myanmar IDPs Lack Food and Accommodation After Shan State Attacks

By Chit Min Tun 27 September 2019

Yangon – Over 100 people from Kong Sa Village who were displaced by clashes in Kutkai Township in northern Shan State say they are short of food and lack proper accommodation.

They fled to Mengtung Village after the Tatmadaw (Myanmar army) clashed with the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) near their village on Sept. 24.

“They are 40 households and 141 people in total. They are staying at the monastery. And it is not suitable for them all to sleep together. They also need food,” said Mai Ai Kham, manager of the Mengtung camp for internally displaced people (IDPs).

The IDPs are short of food. They do not dare go outside the village because they fear landmines, said Sai Bu from Kutkai who is assisting IDPs in Mengtung.

“They are very short of food. They need basics like rice, oil, salt and onions. There are landmines around the village and it is not even safe to collect firewood. Provision of groceries will help them,” she told The Irrawaddy.

Over 500 people from three villages are also taking shelter at churches in the areas, she added.

The latest clash between the Tatmadaw and the TNLA took place on Sept. 25 in Kutkai, said Mai Ai Kham.

“But villagers still do not dare return to their homes, as clashes can erupt anytime,” said Sai Bu.

A joint force from the TNLA, Arakan Army and Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army launched coordinated attacks on six sites, including the Defense Services Technological Academy of the Tatmadaw in Pyin Oo Lwin, Mandalay Region, on Aug. 15, prompting retaliation from government forces. Since then sporadic fighting has taken place in northern Shan State.

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