Nordic Embassies calls for immediate humanitarian access to be granted for Thantlang

All four Nordic Embassies in Myanmar including the Embassy of Denmark in Myanmar, the Embassy of Sweden in Yangon, the Norwegian Embassy in Yangon, and the Embassy of Finland in Yangon have called for immediate humanitarian access to be granted for Thantlang, Myanmar.

In a statement, the Embassy of Denmark and the Embassy of Sweden both said: 

“We are deeply concerned over the reports that at least 100 houses and two churches in Thantlang, Chin State, including a local office of our partner organization Save The Children, have been destroyed by fire following a military attack on 29th October 2021. 

Due to intensified fighting in Chin State since June, more than 10,000 residents of Thantlang Township have reportedly fled to villages along the India-Myanmar border or to India’s Mizoram state. We strongly condemn all attacks on civilian targets including religious facilities. Humanitarian access, including life-saving health and other social assistance, must be granted immediately.”

The Norwegian and the Finnish embassies also posted a similar statement saying the countries are very concerned by reports that the Myanmar military is attacking civilians, their homes, and churches in Chin State. 

“Troop builds up in Chin and Sagaing, as well as ongoing fighting across the country is very worrying. The civilian population continues to suffer the consequences of this escalation of violence.

We call on the military leadership to cease violence against its own people immediately and ensure humanitarian aid to all those in need. Information about the situation on the ground is scarce, due to internet and telecommunication shutdowns. These restrictions must be removed,” the Embassies said. 

Following the military attack on 29 October, Save the Children said it was concerned about the safety of 20 children who are thought to remain in the town. It fears that hundreds of homes could be destroyed, as many buildings in the town are made of wood. Save the Children said it had not been able to assess the damage to its office firsthand as civilian access to the town has been restricted since it was abandoned. The agency was forced to suspend its lifesaving health programs in the town after violence broke out last month.

About Gregers Møller

Editor-in-Chief • ScandAsia Publishing Co., Ltd. • Bangkok, Thailand

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