Nidin Bengali refugee camp shut down

Writer: 
Than Hlaing

Nidin Bengali IDP camp in Kyauktaw Township, opened temporarily in order to cope with clashes occurring in Rakhine State during 2012, has now closed on August 19.

There are 85 houses with 580 people residing in the IDP camp. Bengalis from the surrounding areas also came to stay in Nidin village. After getting agreement from those living in the camp, houses were built at the back of Nidin village where there are vacant farm lands. They are now moving to the new houses built in the vacant farm lands.

“We have moved people from the 85 households to the new homes. Today is the last day we’ve moved to the new houses. Separate houses for those families have been completed and the refugees have agreed to move. So the relocation is taking place. We have been building houses since the previous month,” said Dr. Aung Thu Rain, Director of the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement.

The government has been implementing the 88 recommendations by the Kofi Annan-led Advisory Commission on Rakhine State and closing down refugee camps is one of them. In August 2017, Kofi Annan’s commission presented 88 recommendations to the Myanmar government on improving the situation including long term remedies. The report included advice related to government and administration, covering of news media, access for UN agencies and INGOs, the process of citizenship verification, freedom of religion, socio-economic matters, national and border security, cooperation with international community in terms of security.

For theresettlement programme, cooperation between Rakhine State Government and Implementation committee on recommendations on Rakhine State has been carried out. Although they (Bengalis) are now moving to new houses, the ministry will provide further assistance as required according to Dr. Aung Thu Rain, Director of the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement.

The government has yet to shut down many refugee camps holding tens of thousands of displaced people in Rakhine State since the outbreak of violence in 2012.