Refugees ap­peal for warm clothes, food

The Myanmar Times - Weekend - - News -

THE cold weather has be­gan to bite for thou­sands of peo­ple dis­placed by the fight­ing in Kachin State, who are ap­peal­ing for warm clothes and food as they strug­gle to sur­vive.

The ap­peal came from an es­ti­mated 40,000 refugees in ar­eas con­trolled by the eth­nic Kachin In­de­pen­dence Army (KIA) who have not re­ceived aid from lo­cal or in­ter­na­tional aid agen­cies for the past three years.

Fight­ing be­tween the KIA and Tat­madaw (mil­i­tary) re-ig­nited in 2011, forc­ing an es­ti­mated 120,000 peo­ple to seek refuge in di­lap­i­dated refugee camps, ac­cord­ing to U Gum Sha Awng, sec­re­tary of Joint Strat­egy Team, a lo­cal re­lief group com­prised of nine civil so­ci­ety or­gan­i­sa­tions.

Mean­while, con­ser­va­tion­ists seem to be bang­ing their heads against a wall try­ing to find a way to stop the poach­ing of wild ele­phants, one of which was found killed and skinned last week in a for­est in Pathein town­ship of Aye­yarwady Re­gion.

The 15-year-old male had been killed with a poi­soned ar­row, ac­cord­ing to U Khin Maung Myint, di­rec­tor of the Aye­yarwady For­est De­part­ment.

The poach­ing con­tin­ues de­spite com­bined pa­trols by po­lice, the de­part­ment and en­vi­ron­men­tal groups, he added. From Jan­uary to Septem­ber, seven wild ele­phants died in Aye­yarwady, three of them killed by poach­ers.

In the eco­nomic cap­i­tal of Yan­gon, health au­thor­i­ties have raised con­cerns about the ris­ing num­ber of dog bites, which has bro­ken a three-year record.

Dr. Khin Theingi Myint, med­i­cal su­per­in­ten­dent of Yan­gon Gen­eral Hos­pi­tal, said that 1394 peo­ple were bit­ten by dogs in Oc­to­ber, the high­est num­ber recorded in the past three years. From Jan­uary to Oc­to­ber this year, 8629 peo­ple have sought treat­ment for dog bites at the hos­pi­tal.

The prob­lem of thou­sands of stray dogs loi­ter­ing on the streets of Yan­gon has been go­ing on for years, and city au­thor­i­ties have yet to find a so­lu­tion.

The Yan­gon City De­vel­op­ment Com­mit­tee cur­rently uses five meth­ods to deal with stray dogs: neu­ter­ing, vac­ci­na­tion, send­ing dan­ger­ous dogs to shel­ters, poi­son­ing, and pro­mot­ing re­spon­si­ble pet own­er­ship.

In Kayin State, peo­ple flocked to a vil­lage to pay their last re­spects to the highly re­spected Sa­dayaw U Bhad­danta, 71, who passed away last month.

A grand fu­neral was held for the revered monk on Tues­day in Myaing Gyi Ngu vil­lage of Hpa-an town­ship after thou­sands of peo­ple held a vigil.

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