Nepal fire leaves 4,000 refugees from Bhutan homeless
More than 4,000 refugees from Bhutan were left homeless after a fire swept through a United Nations camp in Nepal on Tuesday. The fire destroyed about 700 of the 800 huts in Goldhap refugee camp, which lies 500 kilometres south-east of Kathmandu.
Two people were seriously burned, and 18 others were treated for minor injuries.
"The aid agencies are working to provide relief to the victims," chief discrict officer Shashi Shekhar Shrestha said.
"Nepal's government will provide 1,500 rupees to each victim."
The refugees are all ethnic Nepalese who fled Bhutan in the early 1990s.
They claimed ethnic and political persecution after Bhutan made national dress compulsory and banned the Nepalese language.
Two years ago, 12,000 refugees were left homeless after fire broke out in the same camp.
A resettlement programme for the refugees began in 2007, and the UN said last year that more than 40,000 refugees had left camps, relocating to the United States and several Western countries.