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Residents in flooded delta region call for more aid

Residents in the Irrawaddy Region’s Pantanaw township, which has been submerged by floodwaters for more than a month, are calling for emergency relief.

Pantanaw township has been inundated with monsoon rains and flooding since late July. Residents and aid workers on the ground claim the water has yet to subside due to the area’s faulty infrastructure and irrigation systems.

Myanmar [Burma] Social Development Network’s founder Nay Myo Zin said local residents are now facing food shortages and are in desperate need of aid.

“The water has only gone down by about four or five inches since the flooding began. This is due to the lack of irrigation [canals] to channel the water out,” said said Nay Myo Zin.

“Farmers have also lost most of their paddy fields – they only have enough rice to eat for about another week.”

Relief groups said among the areas in Irrawaddy Division affected by floods this year, Bassein (Pathein) district’s Tharbaung, Kangyidaunt, Kyaungon and Pantanaw townships have been the worst hit.

According to a report by the Associated Press, about 70,000 people have been displaced in the delta region and are being housed at more than 200 emergency relief centers in the area.

The excessive flooding across the country over the course of the summer has destroyed more than 600,000 acres of paddy in Burma. As a result, this week the Myanmar [Burma] Rice Federation has begun selling off 10,000 bags of rice reserves a day to combat inflation as the price of the staple continues to increase.


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