Two thousand Kachin Christians, who were trapped in the jungle in northern Myanmar following attacks by the Myanmar (Burmese) army in April, have now reached safety, travelling on foot and by elephant. Barnabas Fund reports that although they are now free and safe, many are still in desperate need and thousands have taken shelter in churches.
There is also the threat of further attacks by the military. Contacts say: ‘Please continue to pray for the Kachin. The Burmese army have sent more troops to other Kachin areas, and we are expecting a new flood of attacks and refugees soon when the rainy season starts.’
The total number of Kachin displaced is estimated to be as high as 10,000. Those who fled, including new mothers and the elderly, have mostly travelled without any mechanised transport, through thick jungle. Several are reported to have been injured by landmines. Thanks to its supporters, Barnabas Fund has sent aid.
The latest phase of the Myanmar military’s campaign in Kachin regions in northern Myanmar began with heavy airstrikes on 11 April 2018. The mainly Christian ethnic minority has been targeted for decades in what the government claims is a campaign against Kachin separatist groups.