Russia

Chechens told to leave refugee camps....

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The head of the Sputnik camp for displaced persons in Ingushetia, said that Russian generals were guaranteeing the security of towns. "We're proposing to [the refugees] that they go back to their homes. It's not a matter of whether they want or don't want to go back -- why wouldn't you want to go back to your very own home?" Asked why camp administrators were discontinuing the food rations of some displaced persons, Khuchbarov, whose camp currently houses about 9,000 people, said, "Why should we continue to feed them? If we continue to feed them, they'll never leave. And they could have left a long time ago. . .because they have nothing to fear."
The Sputnik displaced persons camp administration told "Lipkhan" (not her real name), a thirty-nine-year-old mother of eleven, that her family would no longer receive food rations. Lipkhan said that one of the camp administrators came to her tent to show her a written order that she and three other families from Sernovodsk would no longer receive rations. "I am being pushed to go," Lipkhan said. "If I were given a choice, I would stay here even though the conditions are bad." Lipkhan has an eight-month-old baby who is ill with a respiratory infection.

There were reports that some refugees had had food ration cards withdrawn to pressure them to go. But on Thursday Russian authorities temporarily suspended an order denying food to refugees who failed to return to northern Chechen territories "liberated" by federal forces. "People in Sputnik camp are being denied food.

Islamic Relief program activities so far.

Islamic Relief has been active in the area by providing aid to those refugees inside Ingushetia.In the last week. Islamic Relief has:-

* Distributed a further 2950 food packets in the 'Sputnik', 'Severnii' and 'Karabulak' refugee camps.

* Distributed 5900 food packets amounting to 89 tonnes of food. The food has been divided into individual food packets consisting of Flour, Sugar, Vegetable oil, Macaroni, Tea, Beans, Salt. Non-food items include Candles and Matches.

* Installed 20 water tanks with another 10 on the way. Each has a 3 tonne capacity; these will be filled on a regular basis to provide clean water to 8 camps.

* Secured 5000 plastic water containers which will be distributed to the refugees this week. Secured 5000 blankets - to be delivered and distributed next week.

* Two of the four proposed mobile clinics / ambulances have arrived to provide much needed medical help.