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Chin groups call on India to allow UN to assist refugees in northeast

FROM THE DVB NEWSROOM

Chin civil society groups requested that international organizations pressure India to allow the U.N. to establish an office in Mizoram or Manipur states to assist the more than 50,000 refugees in northeast India. The U.S.-based Chin Association of Maryland (CAM) issued a statement on June 27 after it met with Chin refugees in Mizoram. It stated that the number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) in Chin, Sagaing and Magway has reached one million, which could force many of them to also seek asylum and humanitarian assistance in India.  

“We went to Mizoram, met with refugees and made a report. We need help from the U.S. [government] and U.N. agencies in order to provide effective assistance in Mizoram. I would like to request the Indian government to allow them in,” said Zo Tum Hmung, the CAM director. “Our Chin State is the poorest in the country. The Burma military launches their campaigns from the mainland. People desperately need help as it is difficult to travel when there is fighting everywhere in the state. I request donors to directly help us as people are in distress because of the monsoon season,” said Salai Htet Ni, the Chin National Front (CNF/CNA) spokesperson. 

The Chinland Defense Force (CDF) states that it is defending Chin State, along with western Sagaing and Magway regions from military assaults. Burma Army troops stage near daily attacks in Kalay Township of Sagaing Region, which is the gateway into northern Chin State and the India-Burma border. The 1,400 km-long border is facing an upsurge in violence on both sides. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the White House on June 21 to meet with U.S. President Joe Biden. Outside the Kuki-Chin community in the U.S. called for an end to the violence taking place in their homeland of Manipur State, India. Modi and Biden only addressed Burma when they issued a joint statement calling for the release of those arbitrarily detained.

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