BURMA: Crisis in Kachin State as army attacks persist

Posted by Admin Saturday, July 23, 2011
An aid crisis has been triggered after 20,000 people were caught in fighting after the army broke a seventeen-year ceasefire last month.

20,000 people flee human rights abuses

More than 20,000 civilians have been forced to flee Kachin state, where a seventeen-year ceasefire with the Burma Army was broken in June. Children and infants are among those now in desperate need of basic aid supplies. Those fleeing are now considered internally displaced people (IDPs), and many are staying in welfare camps administered by churches and NGO groups.
Kachin resistance headquarters on high alert for attack

According to the respected Irrawaddy magazine, the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) is on high alert after rumours that Burmese government forces are planning a major assault against its headquarters in Laiza this week. The KIA is the Kachin resistance, established to defend Kachin people against the national Burma Army’s attacks. Despite its name, it seeks autonomy and equal rights for ethnic nationalities within a federal, democratic Burma, and is not a separatist movement.

Fears of an imminent attack have caused thousands to attempt entry into China. However, China is denying refuge and terrified villagers are sheltering in camps set up in areas by the KIA’s political wing, the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO). Those who are cut off or otherwise unable to travel to the border camps have fled to towns deeper inside Kachin State.
‘Burma’s civil war without witnesses’

The crisis has been dubbed ‘Burma’s civil war without witnesses’ as the military regime has restricted all NGOs, international relief agencies and independent media from reaching the affected areas. CSW reported these elections as a sham that merely justified an extension of the military dictatorship’s rule.

CSW is calling for prayer for the Kachin crisis:
Please pray:

- That the innocent civilians will not die of starvation, malnutrition or injuries and that aid will reach them.
- That the government of China will grant cross-border access to the refugee camps for international relief agencies.
- That the Burmese regime will grant unfettered access to the refugee camps to local NGOs and international relief agencies.
- For the numerous volunteer workers who are working under trying conditions to make a difference in the lives of the displaced refugees.

If you would like to make a donation to the relief efforts, please visit: http://www.partnersworld.org.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=175

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Burmese troops kill unarmed Kachin civilian

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