The UN is due to hold an emergency summit as international pressure is mounting on Burma's junta to allow the cyclone relief force to help the millions in need. Alice Beaumont and Anaïs Boussat report.
The United Nations is due to convene a summit in Asia to address the aid crisis in Burma, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced on Thursday, as the ruling military junta remained determined to block further foreign aid from entering into the cyclone-hit country.
"I understand that this emergency summit will be convened by the UN secretary-general with the Asian group of countries and in the region and I think that is great progress," Brown told reporters in
Foreign powers are signaling more strongly than ever for the Burmese military government to open up to international help, warning that further delay could lead to starvation and disease among up to 2.5 million people left homeless by Cyclone Nargis. The United Nations’ secretary general Ban Ki-moon announced that the organisation’s humanitarian chief John Holmes would visit
EU Humanitarian Aid Commissioner Louis Michel visited the cyclone-hit country to urge the ruling junta to open its doors to a complete emergency response. In an interview from
A “parody of democracy”
The warning comes as the Burmese population faces a new cyclone threat, days after the passage of the deadly storm which left thousands dead or missing. “Deteriorating weather conditions and the threat of a cyclone are hampering relief work,” reports
Meanwhile, the junta announced 92.4% of the population had voted in favour of a referendum on its Constitution, held just days after the cyclone devastated the country. “It’s a parody of democracy. And it shows just how far from the people’s preoccupations the government is,” Payen said.
Out of reach
Nearly two weeks after the storm, most victims of
The storm rammed into the rice-growing Irrawaddy Delta region and the economic hub
Date created : 2008-05-15