Driven out by militants, 300 people from Myanmar flee to Mizoram

Lalzirliana pointed out that the refugees were staying in schools and community halls and the Mizoram government was providing them food.

Published: 22nd May 2017 12:55 AM  |   Last Updated: 22nd May 2017 12:55 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

GUWAHATI:  A Myanmar-based insurgent group has driven out nearly 300 people, mostly women and children, from their homes forcing them to flee to neighbouring Mizoram in search of refuge.

According to defence sources, the exodus took place on Friday. The insurgent group, Arakan Army, held back the male villagers. 

The Assam Rifles said it had received information from the civil administration on Friday about the influx of a large group of people from Myanmar to southern Mizoram. Subsequently, it sent two teams to a village, Lungpuk. During profiling, the teams learnt that there were more than 200 refugees.

Later, the teams visited another village, Khaikhy, and found 77 more refugees there.

“The refugees revealed that they were residents of Ralie village in Chin State of Myanmar. They said they were threatened and pushed out of their homes by Myanmar-based ethnic insurgent group, Arakan Army, while most of the male villagers were held back,” a senior Assam Rifles officer told The New Indian Express.

Mizoram home minister, R Lalzirliana, said the State government was taking care of the refugees.

“They can travel up to 15 km from the international border inside India and stay there for some time. Myanmar and India have an agreement in this regard. But we will soon inform the Central government about them,” he said.

Lalzirliana pointed out that the refugees were staying in schools and community halls and the Mizoram government was providing them food.

Earlier, the Assam Rifles interacted with Myanmar Army authorities about ensuring a safe return of the refugees by providing adequate security.

Myanmar has over 20 insurgent outfits. A dozen of them are lying low following signing of ceasefire agreements with the government two years back. The Arakan Army was founded in 2009 and it is fighting to protect the Arakan people and establish peace, justice, freedom and development.

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