With an escalation of fighting between ethnic rebel groups and government troops in Myanmar’s conflict areas that are spread along the country’s borders, civilians from ethnic and religious minorities are being forced to flee for safety. Tens of thousands of Christians have taken refuge in Malaysia, according to reports.

More than 100,000 Christians from Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, now live in Malaysia as refugees after recently fled their homes because of religious persecution, according to a report by TRT World, Turkey’s national public broadcaster.

“Myanmar isn’t safe for us. They killed people, sent people to jail because of religion,” a Christian refugee was quoted as saying.

Myanmar’s border states have been the scene of some of the world’s longest running civil wars. Ethnic minority groups have been fighting for greater autonomy in their respective states and have been resisting the military’s efforts to assimilate them into the majority Burman culture ever since Burma achieved independence from British rule in 1948.

While Burma’s politics has been dominated by the ethnic Burman majority, most of the country’s estimated 4 million Christians are from ethnic minorities who live in states along the country’s borders with China, Thailand and India.
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