Almost all of the international non-government organisations that suspended operations in Rakhine after rioting there in late March have returned, the state government said on May 12.

A total of 20 of the 23 INGOs that suspended work after offices and warehouses of United Nations agencies and humanitarian organisations were damaged in riots in the Rakhine capital, Sittwe, on March 26 and 27 had returned, said state government spokesperson U Win Myaing.

“A condition of their return is their agreement to work openly with the Emergency Co-ordination Centre,” U Win Myaing told Mizzima on May 12.

EEC member U Oo Thar Pwint said INGOs wishing to operate in the state would have to accept guidelines set by the centre.

The EEC was originally appointed by the Union government but in the aftermath of the expulsion of Medicins Sans Frontieres from the state in late February its composition was changed to include Rakhine Buddhist elders.

The first INGOs returned to Rakhine under the new operating procedures on April 22.

On April 23, EEC member U Than Htun was quoted as saying by Radio Free Asia that UN agencies and INGOs were required to inform the centre a week in advance where and how they wanted to operate and how much aid they intended to provide.

“They can begin their work when the ECC approves it,” he said.