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Thousands displaced by Myanmar unrest: UN

Published on Oct 28, 2012 1:07 PM

YANGON (AFP) - More than 22,000 people from mainly Muslim communities have been displaced by fresh unrest in western Myanmar that has killed dozens and seen whole neighbourhoods razed, the UN said on Sunday.

The United Nations chief in Yangon, Ashok Nigam, said government estimates provided early on Sunday were that 22,587 people had been displaced and 4,665 houses were set ablaze in a new wave of communal unrest that swept Rakhine state last week.

"We have to say that this is a current estimate and we suspect there may be additional numbers," he said, adding that 21,700 of those made homeless were Muslims.

"Those 22,000 people are still in the locality where they were, they are not moving. The boat people are separate," he added, referring to thousands of additional displaced people who have surged towards the state capital Sittwe.

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