Over 200 Myanmarese refugees sought shelter in Mizoram's Champhai after airstrikes: Official
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Aizawl: As many as 30,401 people from Myanmar have taken refuge in different parts of Mizoram since the military seized power in the country in February last year, home minister Lalchamliana informed the state legislature on Tuesday.

Lalchamliana stated that the government has completed profiling of 30,401 Myanmar nationals and of these, identity cards certifying the holder as refugees, have been issued to 30,177 people.

“Although profiling is more or less completed, it is a continual process and conducted in a phased manner as there are still new entrants and some people used to return to their villages on a regular basis,” he said.

Lalchamliana said that the state disaster management and rehabilitation department has so far disbursed Rs 3 crore as a relief.

Meanwhile, an official said that there has been a fresh influx of Myanmar nationals in the state’s southernmost Lawngtlai district in the wake of armed clashes between the Myanmar Army and the underground Arakan Army (AA) in Myanmar’s Varang and surrounding villages near the Indian border. 

Lawngtlai sub-divisional officer (Sadar) TT Beikhaizi said that 589 more people from Myanmar entered Lawngtlaid district in the last one week following the armed clashes between the Myanmar Army and AA on August 31.

“Of the 589 new entrants, 210 took shelter at Hmawngbuchhuah village, 115 at Zochachhuah, 127 at Laitlang and 137 others took shelter at Dumzautlang village in Lawngtlaid,” she said.

According to Beikhaizi, who is the district nodal officer of the task group on Myanmar refugees, as many as 5,909 Myanmar refugees have taken refuge in the Lawngtlai district so far. 

Six Mizoram districts – Champhai, Siaha, Lawngtlai, Serchhip, Hnahthial and Saitual- share a 510 km long international border with Myanmar’s Chin state. 

The influx of people from Myanmar mostly from Chin state commenced in late February last year. The Chin community shares an ethnicity with the Mizos.

The majority of the refugees live in relief camps, while others are accommodated by their local relatives and some others live in rented houses. 

Apart from the government, Myanmar nationals are provided with food and other relief by NGOs, churches, student bodies, and village authorities.

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