Mizoram’s Lawngtlai district starts registration of 1,600 Myanmar refugees

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Aizawl/Guwahati, December 7: The administration of southern Mizoram’s Lawngtlai district has started the process to register the over 1,600 Myanmarese nationals who had taken refuge in four remote villages in the district.

“Registration of 1,600 Myanmarese nationals have been undertaken to ascertain the number of refugees in four villages in southern Mizoram’s Lawngtlai district”, Deputy Commissioner Arun T said on Thursday.

“After the refugees are registered with the district administration, they would be given temporary ration cards for food distribution among them” he added.

The Deputy Commissioner said officials of the district administration were keeping a close watch on the refugees and elaborate security arrangements have been made.

“We like to see that they go back once the fighting ends across the border,” he said, adding, the district administration had to render assistance on humanitarian grounds.

The exodus of civilians from Myanmar to Lawngtlai district began on 25 November last after armed clashes between the Myanmar Army and the Arakan militants.

The refugees, majority of them women and children, crossed the border and took shelter in Hmawngbuchhuah, Zochachhuah, Laitlang and Dumzautlang villages after the Myanmarese Army launched a major offensive against the Arakan militants in Myanmar’s Chin State near the Mizoram border.

Sources confirmed that the refugees who took shelter in the four villages — Hmawngbuchhuah, Zochachhuah, Laitlang and Dumzautlang — belonged to Khumi and Rakhine province of Myanmar, known to the local populace inside Mizoram as ‘Zakhai’ tribes.

Edited by: Arnab Jyoti Das