7 May 2008
Tropical cyclone Nargis hit South-western of Myanmar, caused serious casualties and tens of thousand people being relocated. In response to the emergency needs, the Hong Kong Red Cross has remitted HKD500,000 to support the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (International Federation) in implementing relief operation in Myanmar. The Federation has released approximately HKD 1,480,000 to Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS) for emergency relief work.
The International Federation has launched a preliminary emergency appeal for 6.29 million Swiss francs (approximately HKD46 million) to support relief operations for 6 months. The fund will support 30,000 affected families with family kits and temporary shelters.
According to the latest figures, the cyclone led to a death toll of 22,000 , 41,000 people missing, and millions of people being affected. Houses, vegetation and infrastructures were damaged extensively. In the worst-hit area – some villages in the Irrawaddy delta region in south-western Myanmar, about 95% of houses have been completely or partially destroyed. The most needed relief items are safe drinking water, temporary shelters and non-food relief items.
Red Cross Actions
Relief workers of MRCS and the International Federation are assessing the situation in the districts of Yangon and Irrawaddy. Over 100 Red Cross volunteers & medical team will arrive the worst-hit area – the Irrawaddy delta - to support the relief work. The MRCS has distributed 2,000 family kits, including clothes, mosquito nets, blankets, plastic sheeting, and cooking sets to the affected people in Yangon. In addition, 5000 liters of drinking water was distributed to the affected people living in temporary shelters.
Further relief items are readied to be transported to affected area
Moreover, another 2,200 family kits were pre-positioned in branches across the country for usage. The International Federation has also pre-stocked emergency supplies – such as emergency shelter kits, insecticide-treated bed nets, blankets, plastic sheet and cooking sets in their Asia Pacific headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, which will be made available for transporting by ships or vehicles to Myanmar. Since this unprecedented disaster has affected vast areas of the country, and together with the fact that electricity, tele-communication systems and roads were damaged, the difficulty of this relief operations is much increased.
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