PHOTO GALLERY: The Chin in India and Malaysia
Northwestern Chin State, which borders India, is Myanmar's poorest state. Forced labour, arbitrary arrest and detention, and torture by the military are among the reasons why Chins flee the country, according to rights groups.
The two main destinations for Chin refugees are India and Malaysia. In India, they are found in Mizoram State, across the border from Chin State, as well as in the capital, Delhi. The Chin have no legal status and little protection in Mizoram, but in Delhi, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) is allowed to maintain an office and provide basic services to refugees.
In Malaysia, the Chin live mostly in the capital, Kuala Lumpur. Although rights groups say they are vulnerable to harassment and detention, Chin are able to apply for asylum though UNHCR.
These pictures follow the journey of the Chin from their home state in western Myanmar to the rural, isolated communities of Mizoram in India, the refugee neighbourhoods of Delhi and the urban flats of Malaysia.
The photos and edited text are courtesy of the Canada-based Chin Human Rights Organization (CHRO) and are part of a travelling exhibition in 2010.
[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]