Thursday, May 29, 2008

Myanmar approves all pending visas for UN aid workers

Myanmar's leaders are leery of foreign aid workers and international agencies, worrying they could weakened the junta's grip on power. The generals also don't want their people to see aid coming directly from countries like the U.S. that the junta has long treated as a hostile power.

--Read More: here

Myanmar lashes out at foreign aid offers

Myanmar's junta lashed out at offers of foreign aid on Thursday, criticising donors' demands for access to the Irrawaddy delta and saying Cyclone Nargis' 2.4 million victims could "stand by themselves"

"The people from Irrawaddy can survive on self-reliance without chocolate bars donated by foreign countries," the Kyemon newspaper said in a Burmese-language editorial.
--Read More: here

Burma’s Censors Vet In-Depth Cyclone Reports

Burma’s press censors are closely vetting local newspaper reports on the aftermath of Cyclone Nargis, according to journalists in Rangoon.

The chief editor of one journal said in-depth reporting from the cyclone-devastated areas was being cut by the censorship board.

“Three of my stories which describe the hard-hit areas and the plight of survivors were censored,” he said.

--Read More: here

Nargis: A Cash Cow for the Regime?

Many villages in cyclone affected areas in the Irrawaddy delta are still waiting for food, shelters and supplies, according to Burmese aid workers who visited villages in the Kyungyangone, Nyaungdone and Dedaye areas.

"People who were begging there are now being forcibly removed form the roadside," said a Burmese aid worker who returned from Dedaye. "It’s really a depressing situation there."

--Read More: here

Massive Forced Evictions in Refugee Camps

Burma’s military government has been forcibly evicting tens of thousands of refugees who lost family members, houses and property during Cyclone Nargis, which struck Burma on May 2-3.

Most of the evictions have occurred in temporary shelters in Rangoon and Irrawaddy divisions.

--Read More: here