Publication Date



Economic Development


Burma, officially known as the Republic of Myanmar, is a small nation in Asia, bordering Bangladesh, India, China, Laos and Thailand. For many years, the nation has suffered military dictatorship, inflicting violence and torture on various ethnic groups. Burma is one of the most diverse countries in the world. The largest ethnic groups, making up approximately 68% of the nation’s population, are the Burmans, also called Bamar. Other ethnic groups include the Chin, Kachin, Karen, Karenni, Mon, Rakhine, Shan and Wa peoples. There are over 500,000 individuals from Burma currently residing in refugee camps in Bangladesh, India, Malaysia and Thailand. America is the new home of thousands of refugees from Burma. This fact sheet focuses mainly on three of the largest ethnic groups: Burman, Karen, and Chin.