Burma donates to Sri Lanka's displaced

June 5, 2009 (DVB), The Burmese junta has donated US$50,000 to the Sri Lankan government in humanitarian aid for the thousands displaced by the recent conflict between the rebel Tamil Tigers and the Sri Lankan army.

Sri Lankan troops intensified their offensive against the Tamil Tigers, the world's largest guerilla army, in May this year.

The Tigers then announced their defeat on 17 May with the statement, "This battle has reached its bitter end", following the death of leader Velupillai Prabhakaran.

The Sri Lankan civil war rivals Burma's internal conflict for longevity. The Tamil Tigers were founded in 1976 and have been fighting the government for over 30 years, making it one of the world's longest running conflicts.

A statement on the Sri Lankan government website confirmed that the money would go to the displaced in Sri Lanka's north.

"Responding to a request for humanitarian assistance, the Government of the Union of Myanmar has decided to donate US$50,000 as a demonstration of sympathy and goodwill towards internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the Northern province in Sri Lanka," it said.

Both Sri Lanka and Burma have topped news headlines over the past month; Sri Lanka for the Tamil conflict and Burma for its trial of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, with both governments accused of illegal practice.

Reporting by Francis Wade

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