Friday, October 26, 2012

Nippon Foundation to give $3 million in aid to ethnic areas

Friday, 26 October 2012 13:55 Hinthani

Sangkhlaburi (Mizzima) – The Nippon Foundation will give rice and medicine worth US$ 3 million as the first batch of humanitarian aid to war refugees in ethnic areas in Burma.

Nippon Foundation Chairman Yōhei Sasakawa, right, and UNFC leader Khun Okkar, left, at the “Conference on Emergency Humanitarian Aid to Myanmar Ethnic Groups.” Photo: NMSP

United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) leader Khun Okkar, who recently returned from a conference in Japan, said that in addition to the current aid, the foundation is likely to give additional aid.

The Burmese government and the UNFC signed a Memorandum Of Understanding concerning the aid, officials told Mizzima.

In addition, the Nippon Foundation will sponsor a meeting between the government’s peace committee led by Aung Min and UNFC, leaders officials said. According to the plan, the government and the UNFC will meet in Cambodia in November and in Japan in December.

The Nippon Foundation will give rice and medicines worth US$ 3 million to all ethnic regions as the first batch of aid, Khun Okkar told Mizzima.

The Nippon Foundation organized a “Conference on Emergency Humanitarian Aid to Myanmar Ethnic Groups” in Japan on Oct. 18. Twenty-two delegates from ethnic organizations attended the conference to discuss the needs of their regions.

According to an agreement, the aid will be given through domestic organizations as soon as possible. Some humanitarian aid will be given through the Myanmar Egress, an NGO based in Burma.

The group will provide the aid to Karenni (Kayah), Karen and Mon states no later than December, officials said.

Plans reportedly call for aid to be distributed to 4,417 displaced persons from 17 villages located north of Shataw in Karenni State between October and December.

Up to 400 bags of rice per month will also be supplied to to each of the Karen National Union’s brigades (Nos. 1 to 7] and the KNU headquarters. Moreover, the Klohtoobaw Karen Organization (KKO) and Karen National Liberation Army Peace Council led by General Htaing Maung will be given 400 bags of rice per month; the New Mon State Party will be given 1,000 bags per month via Mawlamyaing.

The Nippon Foundation will also provide aid to Kachin, Arakan (Rakhine), Chin and Shan states and various Palaung areas.

Meanwhile, UNFC has urged the Nippon Foundation to act as an observer during Burma’s peace making processes.

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