Myanmar at a glance
Humanitarian Needs Continue After Humanitarian Funding Ends
Cyclone Nargis swept across the southern end of the Irrawaddy Delta on the night of 2 May and the morning of 3 May 2008. It triggered a storm surge of at least 3.5m, inundating the low-lying delta and leaving nearly 140,000 dead or missing. In Myanmar, the affected population received little assistance from their own government in the acute emergency phase, and the government also restricted access of international aid workers and prohibited the use of foreign military assets. Now in the recovery phase, survivors are again being denied effective assistance, this time by the international donor community. This is because many donors have taken the position that humanitarian funding is only for the immediate aftermath of a disaster, rather than for reconstruction efforts – in a distinct departure from GHD Principles. Myanmar was not prepared for the disaster and the Nargis response also highlights the critical importance of investment in, and development of, national capacity in all contexts.