Win Nyunt | DMG
2 July, Sittwe
Two camps for internally displaced people (IDPs) built by the local government in Ann town, Arakan State, are in urgent need of food supplies following the arrival of more IDPs, according to officials at the camps.
Due to recent clashes and concern about future hostilities, residents of several villages in the Dar Lat Chaung village-tract have added to the ranks of the two camps’ populations in downtown Ann, with food supplies urgently required for them, said Ko Soe Thein, who is assisting the IDPs.
“Almost all residents in Dar Lat Chaung village-tract fled their homes after they heard that the Tatmadaw would conduct what was described as ‘clearance operations’ against the Arakan Army in the area. We have no more accommodation for IDPs and ran out of food,” he told DMG.
The recent arrivals dare not return home at the moment because they fear ongoing fighting between the Tatmadaw and the Arakan Army, said Ko Than Htike Soe, a resident of Jyeik Chaung village.
“We want to go back home but we hear gunfire and artillery shelling on a daily basis. So we dare not return home amid ongoing clashes between the Tatmadaw and Arakan Army,” he said.
The number of people currently sheltering at one of the government-run IDP camps in downtown Ann has increased to about 1,500, and most of them are reportedly facing food scarcity and a lack of space.
Recent warnings that the Tatmadaw would launch what it described as “clearance operations” against the Arakan Army in Rathedaung Township have prompted thousands of residents to flee their homes to the Arakan State capital Sittwe and elsewhere deemed safer.
Civil society organisations estimate that the number of civilians displaced over the past year due to hostilities between the Tatmadaw and Arakan Army in Arakan State is approaching 200,000, many of whom are in need of assistance accessing healthcare, education, accommodation and food supplies.