Number of IDPs still high islandwide

By Shezna Shums

The number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) continues to remain high around the country, with issues affecting their shelter and well-being being continuously raised by the humanitarian workers in the affected districts.

The latest Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) report states that in Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu Districts the number of IDPs continue to increase specifically in the Manthai east area.

The Government Agent for this area stated that there are 1,031 families, which includes 4,198 persons as of March 17. These families had fled the Forward Defence Lines, where fighting had erupted.

In the Vavuniya and Mannar Districts, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) has recorded a total of 4, 316 displaced families consisting of 15, 400 displaced persons.

Over half this total of displaced families are currently living with friends and family in the Manthai West area.

In Trincomalee District, the IASC noted that there are 249 displaced families, consisting of 858 individuals originally from Kaddaiparichchan, Chenaiyoor and Sampur Divisional Secretaries’ divisions and Muttur east who were moved from Kiliveddy transitional sites to Paddithidal transitional sites.

Currently the IDP statistics being reassessed by the agency show that the government recorded 1, 603 displaced families consisting of 4, 983 displaced persons while the UNHCR records 1, 446 displaced families consisting of 4, 637 displaced persons.

For Batticaloa, the government statistics as of April 24, show that the total registered IDP population in the district stands at 37, 925 families, consisting of 139, 905 displaced persons, who are living in 87 IDP camps.

There is ongoing registration of these IDPs in the south of Batticaloa by the military as well as civilian authorities in view of the planned resettlement towards the western parts of Batticaloa. []

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