Since the start of armed conflicts and violence in February 2021, more than 223,000 people have been displaced in Myanmar and 22,000 refugees have fled to neighbouring countries. With 23,500 people displaced in October alone, the situation continues to deteriorate. In November, Myanmar recorded a total of about 589,000 internally displaced persons.
In a country that already had 980,000 refugees and asylum seekers who have fled to neighbouring countries since December 2020, the precarious living conditions of IDPs have been further challenged by the COVID-19 emergency and severe flooding that has affected large parts of the country, with more than 3 million people in need of humanitarian assistance – including 2 million identified since February 1.
UNHCR is “calling on countries across the region to offer refuge to all those fleeing for safety. It is vital that anyone crossing the border, seeking asylum in another country, is able to access it. Children, women and men fleeing for their lives should be given sanctuary. They must not be returned to a place where their lives or freedom may be at risk. The principle of non-refoulement is a cornerstone of international law and is binding on all states”.
We unite our voices to Pope Francis: “I too kneel on the streets of Myanmar and say: stop the violence! I too extend my arms and say: let dialogue prevail!”
For further information:
Institutional Websites and NGOs
Catholic Bishops Conference of Myanmar (CBCM) – An Earnest Appeal, With Special Reference to the attack on the Sacred Heart Church in Kayanthayar near Loikaw in Eastern Myanmar on 23 rd May 2021 that killed four and wounded many, 25 May 2021