The Straits Times
Published on Oct 29, 2012

UN says over 26,000 displaced by Myanmar unrest


SITTWE, Myanmar (AFP) - Homeless people fled to packed camps or clustered near their charred houses in western Myanmar on Sunday, amid ongoing unrest that the UN said displaced 26,500 from mainly Muslim communities.

Dozens have died and whole neighbourhoods have been razed in clashes that began last week between Buddhists and Muslims in Rakhine state, putting further strain on relief efforts in the region.

The United Nations, which has warned that the bloodshed could imperil Myanmar's reforms, said an estimated 26,500 - including 4,000 who fled in boats to the state capital Sittwe - had been forced from their homes by the fresh violence.

This adds to some 75,000 people already crammed into overcrowded camps after unrest in June.