IDPs living in Myoma Sports Hall in Ann town. (Photo – Ko Myo Lwin)

Myat Swe | DMG
December 29, Sittwe

About 2,000 people have left their homes in Ann Township, Arakan State, due to recent fighting between the Tatmadaw and the Arakan Army (AA), according to volunteers who are helping the internally displaced persons (IDPs).

Clashes broke out on December 25 near Dar Latt village along the shared border of Ann and Myebon townships, forcing locals to flee for their safety.

Volunteers who are helping the IDPs said that 125 people from different villages including Mae Latt Maung and Dar Latt are sheltering at the Myoma Sports Hall in Ann town. Another 1,800 people are taking shelter in Dar Latt village tract.

Ann resident Ko Myo Lwin, who is helping the IDPs, said that IDPs in town are receiving food, clothing and shelter but those in Dar Latt village tract, about 30 miles from the town, are facing difficulties in meeting their basic needs.

“People [donors] are afraid of going to Dar Latt because the fighting is going on, and they think that the government won’t provide enough security for them to go there safely. Because of that, the IDPs there are facing lots of difficulties,” he said.

However, some Ann residents who are supporting the IDPs are making arrangements to travel to Dar Latt village tract to provide assistance.

The AA said that its troops engaged in an intense firefight with Tatmadaw forces on December 25 on a mountain near the border of Myebon and Ann townships.

As the area affected by fighting between the Tatmadaw and the AA expands, the number of civilians displaced continues to grow. The Rakhine Ethnics Congress (REC) said on December 12 that 98,743 people had been forced to leave their homes in Arakan State due to fighting between the Tatmadaw and the AA.

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