The refugees returned during a lull in hostilities between Myanmar government forces and the Shan State Army - North (SSPP/SSA) in northern Shan State.
“The battles have ceased,” said Ko Sai Lu, a committee member at the camp and a spokesperson for the Shan Nationalities Democratic Party. “The government forces have told us they will guarantee security and requested us to go home.”
Ko Sai Lu said the displaced persons were from the villages of Loilem and Loisay in Tangyan Township.
However, he said, although the hostilities have ended, the Myanmar army remains active in the area, and many villagers are afraid of the troops and of landmines, and are very wary about returning.
Another camp committee member suggested to Mizzima that many villagers were afraid they would be forcefully recruited by the government forces if they returned.
The Tangyan township administrative office has arranged for cars to take any refugees back to their home towns. Camp officials said on Thursday that although the displaced persons had received help from Buddhist monks, the Tangyan youth league and members of the Shan Nationalities League for Democracy from nearby Lashio, they only have rice and food rations to last another seven days.
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