CSW reports new evidence of humanitarian crisis in India-Burma border
Fresh evidence of the need for humanitarian assistance and international action was presented during a recent fact finding visit by Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) and the Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust (HART) to the India-Burma border. In some areas international funds for emergency food relief channeled through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) are allegedly being provided as loans, instead of aid, to malnourished villagers, repayable at 200 per cent interest.
Over the past two years Chin State has been devastated by a chronic food shortage caused by the flowering of bamboo, a natural phenomenon which occurs every fifty years. The bamboo flowering attracts plagues of rats, which then destroy rice fields, rice supplies and almost all means of survival for the local population. The Chin Human Rights Organisation (CHRO) estimates that at least 100,000 people in over 200 villages are severely affected.
The delegation led by Baroness Cox, Chief Executive of HART was told by representatives of the Chin Famine Emergency Relief Committee that in at least 17 villages in Paletwa Township, the worst affected part of Chin State, the local UNDP have distributed international funds in the form of loans, instead of providing food aid. Villagers claim they have been told they must repay twice the amount they are given, either in cash or in rice bags. CSW and HART have written to UNDP to request an urgent investigation.
The delegation, which also met with Kachin refugees, received evidence from Kachin and Chin states of religious persecution, forced labour and attempted ‘cultural genocide’ Continue reading “Chronic food shortages and continuing severe human rights violations are taking place in Chin and Kachin states in Burma.” →
You must be logged in to post a comment.