As UN chief Ban Ki-moon visits Burma, FRANCE 24's Anaïs Boussat and Alice Beaumont report from the Irrawaddy delta, where entire villages have been stripped of all sources of livelihood, their traumatized inhabitants still in a state of shock.
Nearly three weeks after Cyclone Nargis pummeled
In a village located 500 meters from the sea, the villagers waited five days before the government sent them a half-kilo of rice package per person, while private donations have just begun to trickle in. Rice is the Burmese staple and a vital food source for the inhabitants of the impoverished Southeast Asian nation.
The villagers have lost all their livestock. Their fishing boats were carried off by the cyclone and their rice plantations were flooded by sea water. “Because of the immensity of the disaster, we have lost everything,” laments a villager. “Me, I survived,” said another, “but I have no idea what I feel - joy or sadness.”
Despite the destruction, none of the villagers want to leave the region. “We need to stick together,” said one survivor, “and then the refugee camps are so far, we do not even know how to get there.”
Date created : 2008-05-22