Aid groups warn of food shortage in western Myanmar
Apri 5 HRB
Aid groups have warned of a humanitarian crisis in western Myanmar,
as thousands of people, mainly Muslims, are facing food and water
Humanitarian aid workers, who were forced to flee the region due to
violence, warned on Monday that in the next two weeks, food stocks will
run out and at least 20,000 displaced people living in camps will be
without clean water in 10 days. Tens of thousands of displaced people,
of whom mostly are stateless Rohingya Muslims, live in bleak camps in
the troubled state of Rakhine.According to UN Office for the
Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the displaced people are
completely reliant on humanitarian deliveries, which have stopped as a
result of the unprecedented attacks on relief organizations.
Unrest broke out in Rakhine last week, when hundreds of Buddhists
gathered around the offices of Germany-based medical aid group Malteser
International in Sittwe, claiming that an aid worker had handled a
religious flag in a disrespectful manner.
They also claim the humanitarian workers in the region are biased in
favor of local Muslims.Over 70 aid workers were provided with police
protection. UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Myanmar Toily
Kurbanov said he was "deeply concerned" by the violence.
Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar account for about five percent of the
country's population of nearly 60 million. They have been persecuted and
faced torture, neglect, and repression since the country's independence
in 1948.Hundreds of Rohingyas are believed to have been killed and
thousands displaced in attacks by Buddhist extremists.The Myanmar
government has been repeatedly criticized by human rights groups for
failing to protect the Rohingya Muslim community.