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Burma: Armed Conflict

Volume 494: debated on Thursday 25 June 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment has been made of the number of people who have moved from Burma to Thailand as a result of the renewed military action in the eastern part of that country; and whether such people have access to humanitarian assistance. (281908)

Latest estimates from the government of Thailand, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) suggest that about 3,000 people have recently entered Thailand to escape fighting in eastern Burma.

Humanitarian assistance for the refugees is being provided by the Thai authorities, UNHCR, the Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) and other NGOs. This assistance includes food, plastic sheeting for shelter, blankets, bed-nets and medical care. The Thai authorities are co-ordinating with UNHCR, TBBC and other NGOs on a medium-term plan for caring for the new refugees.

DFID plans to provide about £7.4 million over the next three years to support Burmese refugees in Thailand and internally displaced people inside Burma. This funding includes £1.1 million for TBBC this financial year.