Guwahati: Several Myanmar nationals who were injured in an airstrike by the military in Chin state crossed the border to Mizoram on Monday and took refuge in Champhai district for treatment.
Official sources in Mizoram said fresh influx from Myanmar into Champhai was also reported following the airstrike by the Myanmar military against Chinland Defence Force (CDF), an armed force of the pro-democracy protesters.
There were reports about dropping two bombs by a fighter jet of Myanmar military in Chin-dominated Rhikhawdar village in Chin state, which is about four kilometers away from Zokhawdar village in Champhai in Mizoram. The fresh conflict erupted after the CDF reportedly took control of an army camp in Rhikhawdar village.
An official in Champhai said at least 20 injured Myanmar nationals, including women and children were being provided treatment in the district hospitals on “humanitarian ground.”
“As the conflict is likely to further escalate, many Myanmar nationals have fled and sought refuge in villages on our side of the border. We have already issued an alert about the fresh conflict and are trying to collect information about the fresh influx from Myanmar,” said an official.
More than 30,000 Myanmar nationals (pro-democracy protesters) including at least 40 MPs and MLAs belonging to National League for Democracy (NLD), a political party, have taken shelter in Mizoram since the military coup in 2020. The NLD is led by Nobel laureate and Myanmar’s most prominent political face, Aung San Suu Kyi. Most of them have been provided shelter by the churches and NGOs and helped by the state government. Mizoram CM Zoramthanga even defied the Centre’s directives to push back the refugees saying they share ethnic ties with the Mizos and Mizoram can not “turn a blind eye to the humanitarian crisis unfolding in its backyards.”
The issue of Myanmar refugees also figured prominently in the Assembly elections in Mizoram on November 7.
(Published 13 November 2023, 15:23 IST)