RealNews

More Refugees on Move in Aceh; Rebel Toll Tops 200

Several thousand villagers streamed into a crowded refugee camp in Indonesia’s Aceh province Sunday to avoid clashes between government troops and separatists, only to face food and water shortages. Burhanuddin, a social services spokesman in Aceh, told Reuters that 16,250 refugees had fled to the town of Bireun over the past three days, up from some 12,000 Saturday. The official Antara news agency said the camp, a football stadium, could only handle up to 5,000 refugees. It said people were short of food and water and beset with sanitation woes. The region around Bireun has seen some of the heaviest fighting since the government launched a fresh offensive four weeks ago to try to crush the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) in a campaign that has killed at least 230 people. “There are still some coming in,” Burhanuddin said by telephone in the provincial capital Banda Aceh, referring to the influx. Full Story

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