Joint Cross-Border Relief Efforts Planned for Hunger Victims in Chin State
Aizawl, India: A meeting of Chin groups yesterday agreed on launching a coordinated cross-border relief program from Mizoram to provide emergency food relief to thousands of people in Chin State who are facing a major food crisis.
The meeting was held in Aizawl, Mizoram and attended by representatives from Chin Famine Emergency Relief Committee (CFERC), Chin Humanitarian Relief Committee (CHRC), Public Affairs Committee (PAC), Women League of Chinland (WLC), Chin Human Rights Organization (CHRO) and the Burma Relief Center (BRC).
The purpose of the meeting was to find ways to more effectively carry out cross-border relief programs through a joint and coordinated relief efforts inside Chin State from Northeast India to help thousands of hunger victims in western Burma. The different groups reported on the progress of their efforts and agreed to lauch a coordinated relief programs together.
Reports of the meeting show that cross-border emergency food relief has been provided to 76 villages so far from Mizoram. This number accounts for only a third of the villages that are believed to be facing severe food shortages, according to a report by Chin Human Rights Organization.
“There is a continuing need for relief provision. The amount of food provided to these villages is only enough to last them for less than a month. And the food aid has not even reached the majority of people,” explains one participant of the meeting who has been involved in the cross-border relief program.
Since late 2006, a massive rat infestation due to a cyclical flowering of bamboo, exacerbated by repressive policies of Burma’s military junta has caused massive shortage of food in Chin State. The crisis has forced more than 2000 people to flee across the border into India and is blamed for dozens of deaths associated with malnutrition and hunger.
12 October, 2008