Cambodian has donated $50,000 to the Myanmar government to aid survivors of cyclone Nargis which ravaged the Southeast Asian nation the previous weekend, leaving 60,000 dead or missing amid fears tens of thousands more may die due to the military dictatorship’s handling of aid operations.
Hor Namhong, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, met with Myanmar ambassador to Cambodia Aung Naing on May 7 to announce the donation, which was made directly to the junta.
“I told the ambassador (Aung Naing) that the money is not a huge amount, but it’s an important show of Cambodia’s willingness (to help),” Namhong told reporters following the meeting.
He said the government was waiting to see how the situation developed in Myanmar’s hardest hit Ayeyarwaddy River delta and the commercial capital Yangon, and might consider a further donation.
“I understand that the danger affecting Myanmar could one day happen to any country,” Namhong said. “This is a danger facing all people so at this time we, and the whole world, must work together to help the people of Myanmar.”
Namhong also voiced his support for a “yes” vote in Myanmar’s May 10 referendum on a new constitution that enshrines the military’s role in government and has been widely criticized in the West for the lack of democratic participation in its drafting.
“I hope that the referendum on May 10 will be a new step towards a democratic election in Myanmar,” he said. Areas badly affected by cyclone Nargis are set to vote on May 25.