border review | 11 August 2011

Bernstein: Fights between KIA and Burmese Army continue to displace people

Danielle Bernstein reports from Laiza, northern Burma, where the ongoing conflict between the Kachin Independence Army and the Burmese military is taking its toll:

In Laiza, a sleepy border town nestled in lush jungles and hills, children are coming home from school, soldiers with rifles on motorbikes are preparing to return to the frontlines, and a Catholic priest is leading a service for internally displaced persons in an IDP camp. […]

The Kachin are devoutly Christian and priests in Laiza have been working overtime to minister to some 7,000 newly arrived refugees in town who have fled nearby fighting.

Local aid workers say that in all, about 16,000 people have been displaced by the fighting on the Taping River, where a Chinese corporation is building two hydroelectric dams.

(Via Voice of America)