Press Release 191 Views

Karenni community organizations appeal for urgent humanitarian support for the Karenni IDPs

September 19th, 2023  •  Author:   Karenni State Interim Executive Council  •  3 minute read
Featured image

Since the beginning of the attempted military coup in Burma in February 2021, armed conflicts in Karenni State have intensified. The military has systematically carried out its brutal “4-cut” strategy, leading to severe and indiscriminate attacks on unarmed civilians–more than 450 of whom have been killed to date. The sustained levels of violence have led to an estimated 250,000 internally displaced people (IDPs), now living in roughly 200 IDP camps throughout Karenni State. Meeting the bare minimum of the needs of the Karenni IDP community will require significant resources. Food for just 150,000 IDPs would cost, at minimum, nearly $1.5 million each month; non-food aid (not including hygiene items) for 150,000 IDPs would amount to nearly $500,000 for the year.

Yet, because the Burmese military junta is blocking the flow of international humanitarian aid into the country, very little support reaches the IDP camps.

“Us IDPs have difficulties finding enough food to eat. We always wish for donors to help us but we have been waiting a while for them. Some of us are completely out of rice already. It would be great if donors showed up. We have to buy drinking water as well. There’s not enough rain falling these days so we can’t collect rainwater. A 1200 gallon tank of water would cost 40,000 MMK ($20).”

Today, Karenni community organizations around the world are appealing for urgent humanitarian support for the more than 250,000 Karenni IDPs. A 3-page briefer by Karenni civil society organizations,released today, contains details about the IDPs, their urgent needs, and recommendations to stakeholders—namely, the Thai government, international community, international humanitarian donors, and the Karenni and Burmese community around the world.

The need is extreme. Currently, most of the support the IDPs receive is from the local community, the diaspora, and faith-based organizations. This is not enough. We appeal to the international donors, humanitarian aid organizations, INGOs, NGOs, and individual donors to please support the thousands of Karenni IPDs who are fleeing for their lives.

As the Burmese military intensifies its attacks, the humanitarian crisis continues to spiral making it difficult for IDPs to survive.

“I am a resident of the Taungtagoo IDP camp. This July there was a bombing of the Taungtagoo IDP camp. After this attack, we faced many challenges. The main challenges are related to accessing education, health, food and water, shelter, and supporting our livelihoods. With education, schools are closed, elementary up to high school cannot start their programs under these conditions. As for health, clinics and hospitals cannot open either. The residents of the camp are affected by these challenges, and lead particularly to mental health problems, especially for the children and elderly. Some young adults are also facing emotional trauma. Due to the aerial bombings, IDPs – children, elderly, and some youth like I said, have mental health problems, and have extreme fear and anxiety about relocating and resettling again in different areas.”

Your kind donation is greatly appreciated.

For more information, please contact:
Banya Khung Aung, Karenni State Interim Executive Council-IEC
Phone/Signal: +95 9 254 150 436
Email: [email protected]

Download PDF.

Download the briefer.