Myanmar’s military government has denied unconfirmed reports that it is hoarding high quality aid meant for cyclone victims and replacing it with rotten food. The regime says the claim is outrageous and insists that the military continues to control relief distribution.
Meanwhile EU ministers in Brussels, trying to find a way of getting the reclusive Myanmar government to allow foreign logistics teams into their country, are urging the aid be flown regardless of Myanmar approval.
EU Foreign Policy Chief Javier Solana: “We have to use all means to help those people. The United Nations charter opens some avenues if things cannot be resolved in order to get humanitarian aid to arrive.”
But it is now 11 days since the south of the country, formally known as Burma, was hit by the cyclone and subsequent devastating storm surge.
As the death toll rises – officially it’s now over 60,000 but the UN claims it is more like 100,000, the junta’s response has been internationally criticised as slow and obstructive.
The World Food Program says it’s only getting in 20 per cent of the food needed.
The survivors are packed into Buddhist monasteries or camped in the open and their drinking water is contaminated by dead bodies and animal carcasses.