International NGOs On Standby for Myanmar Cyclone Relief

A man makes his way through a flooded street in Myanmar. Cyclone Giri battered Myanmar and caused flooding in the Asian country. Photo by: IRIN

International non-governmental organizations said they expect to have better working relations with the Myanmar government for Cyclone Giri relief effort than they had in the aftermath of Cyclone Nargis in 2008.

“Neutral humanitarian assistance is more accepted now than in [Cyclone] Nargis times, so we will see in the coming days,” said Bernd Schell, head of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies’ delegation in Myanmar, according to IRIN.

Cyclone Giri has caused severe flooding in Myanmar, particularly in its western part.

Several NGOs have sent national staff to join local relief and recovery efforts while waiting for the Myanmar government’s permission to deploy international staff, IRIN notes.

International and national U.N. staff are also standby for possible deployment “depending on the level of devastation and expertise needed,” according to Bishow Parajuli, U.N. resident coordinator in Myanmar.

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  • Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.