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KYAUKPYU, a district in the Arakan division of Lower Burma, on the eastern coast of the Bay of Bengal. It consists of, first, a strip of mainland along the Bay of Bengal, extending from the An pass, across the main range, to the Ma-I River, and, secondly, the large islands of Ramree and Cheduba, with many others to the south, lying off the coast of Sandoway. The mainland in the north and east is highly mountainous and forest-clad, and the lower portion is cut up into numerous islands by a network of tidal creeks. Between the mainland and Ramree lies a group of islands separated by deep, narrow, salt-water inlets, forming the north-eastern shore of Kyaukpyu harbour, which extends for nearly 30 m. along Ramree in a south-easterly direction, and has an average breadth of 3 m. The principal mountains are the Arakan Yomas, which send out spurs and sub-spurs almost to the sea-coast. The An pass, an important trade route, rises to a height of 4664 ft. above sea-level. The Dha-let and the An rivers are navigable by large boats for 25 and 45 m. respectively. Above these distances they are mere mountain torrents. Large forests of valuable timber cover an area of about 650 sq. m. Kyaukpyu contains numerous " mud volcanoes," from which marsh gas is frequently discharged, with occasional issue of flame. The largest of these is situated in the centre of Cheduba island. Earth-oil wells exist in several places in the district. The oil when brought to the surface has the appearance of a whitish-blue water, which gives out brilliant straw-coloured rays, and emits a strong pungent odour. Limestone, iron and coal are also found. Area 4387 sq. m.; pop. (1901), 168,827, showing an increase in the decade of 2-3%.

The chief town, Kyaukpyu, had a population in 1901 of 3145. It has a municipal committee of twelve members, three ex officio and nine appointed by the local government, and there is a thirdclass district gaol. Kyaukpyu is a port, under the Indian Ports Act (X. of 1889), and the steamers of the India Navigation Company call there once a week going and coming between Rangoon and Calcutta.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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