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US concerned over poor conditions for war refugees

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) – The United States said Thursday that it is concerned over Sri Lanka resettling some of its war-displaced civilians without basic facilities in their rush to close down a massive refugee camp.

The U.S Embassy said that many war-affected families have been resettled in hastily cleared land without adequate shelter, water, sanitation or livelihoods available for residents.

Sri Lanka last month closed down a refugee camp known as Manik Farm that has housed hundreds of thousands of ethnic Tamil civilians since the country’s quarter-century civil war ended in 2009.

But the United Nations said 346 people from 110 families who were last to leave the camp could not return home because their lands are occupied by the military.

The U.S. said it recently gave $3 million to aid groups to provide shelter, clean water and sanitation and food security.

Sri Lankan soldiers defeated separatist Tamil Tiger rebels in May 2009 when some 300,000 civilians were made homeless.

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