MEDICAL supplies and food will be sent from Brunei Darussalam, as part of the initial relief shipment coordinated by the Embassy of the Union of Myanmar, with more to be sent following on, highlighting strength of Asean cooperation between the two countries.
"We'd like to send the relief material like survivor kits and water purification tablets, rehydration pills and food items," said Moe Kyaw Aung, Deputy Chief of Mission at the Myanmar Embassy in Brunei. So far the assistance has been forthcoming, with a fund started by the embassy taking in contributions and donations from Myanmar citizens in Brunei Darussalam as well as locals here.
The foodstuff that will be sent include items such as instant noodles and soup packets for those hit hard by the cyclone. The senior official also said that the relief will need to travel into the country via air cargo as it is the only accessible means to the country.
"We would like to send the materials as soon as possible," said Moe, adding that the dispatch would depend on how quickly the collection of the donations and contributions can come through.
"If we can collect enough for the first shipment, we will send it through two or three days later, from there the second shipment and so on."
However, as air cargo is costly, the diplomatic corp from Myanmar has placed emphasis on sending medicines and relief items such as the rehydration salts in the first package to be sent from Brunei Darussalam.
"For the time being we cannot accept old clothes and heavy items," said Moe.
Speaking of the challenges faced by the relief effort in Myanmar, both Moe and Myanmar Ambassador to Brunei Darussalam, Thura Thet Oo Maung, said that need for water purification tablets, medical supplies to combat potential water-borne diseases and rehydration salts has become essential in the areas flooded in by the cyclone.
"Myanmar is open to the international relief effort, we welcome assistance from all over the world. This national disaster is unprecedented in modern Myanmar's history, the devastation is so great," said the Ambassador.
"We will be very much appreciative if the Bruneian people can donate as brothers and sisters from Asean. We will be very happy to receive help from Brunei citizens," he said.
The Brunei Times
Myanmar survivors emerge desperate for help — Page 9
Thursday, May 8, 2008
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