Chin government told not to accept foreign relief

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Village authorities were warned by the township administrator of Falam, Chin state of Burma not to accept any assistance and relief from foreign Non-Government Organization (NGOs) last week.

Mr. Khin Maung Win, administrator of Falam has hauled up Leilet, Satawm and Hmawngkawn village’s chairman of Falam Township on 8 August for receiving mosquito nets from Medical Mercy (MM) based in Mizoram, northeast India said Mr. No Kap Thang, incharge of MM.

The MM authorities told Khonumthung that the mosquito nets were distributed free to the local people who cannot afford to buy them.

The Medical Mercy group has been accused of being connected to some opposition parties of Burma so the military and the administrator directed local authorities not to accept relief aid.”We are accused of being connected to some opposition groups. The authorities also accused them of collecting information from inside Burma on the pretext of mosquito net distribution. So, the authorities warned local people to block any foreign assistance” said Mr. No Kap Thang.

The Burmese authority suspect the Chin National Front , which is fighting for self- determination of Chin people from Indo-Burma border of being involved in the MM project.

The villages authorities were forced to sign by Mr. Khin Muang Win not to accept any assistance like mosquito nets and medicines from foreign NGOs in the future.

The MM authority said that the group just helps people of Chin state and it is not dictated by any political party.

Mosquito net distribution, free medical treatment for local people are conducted twice a month in Falam Township and  the  Indo-Burma border areas on a backpack system by MM group and ABC clinic workers jointly.

Medical treatment and mosquito net distribution project will be moved and transferred to other townships of Chin state due to restriction by the authorities, said Mr. No Kap Thang.

“We will transfer our project to Hakha and Teddim townships if the government restricts work in Falam Township” said Mr. Thang.

The MM was formed by Medical Mercy- Canada to provide medicine and mosquito nets in Mizoram, northeast India in 2001. The group has been operating in Chin state, Burma since 2006.

Moreover, another clinic system locally called ABC clinic also formed for free backpack clinic system to help Chin people in Vaphai village, Champhai district of Mizoram was closed in Chin state in April last year.

People of Falam Township and people on the Indo-Burma border areas are dependant on MM and ABC clinic, because local government clinics cannot provide any medicines to the people.

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