Doctors Without Borders Cargo Plane Arrives in Myanmar

Additional Medical and Logistical Material Will Reinforce Ongoing MSF Aid Activities

© Nicolas Tucat /AFP

An MSF chartered plane with nearly 40 tons of emergency relief supplies is loaded in Bordeaux, France. The plane arrived in Yangon, the capital of Myanmar, on Monday, May 12.

More than one week after cyclone Nargis devastated the southwest areas of Myanmar, the first Cargo plane chartered by the international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières(MSF) arrived this morning in Yangon at 8:30 AM local time, loaded with 34 tons of medical and logistical material. After customs clearance, the goods have been transferred to MSF warehouses in the city.

© Souheil Reiache /MSF

Delivered goods include treatments for diarrheal diseases and malaria, ready-to-use therapeutic food, plastic sheeting, water containers, water pumps, and an eight-person Zodiac boat.

Three more MSF cargo planes are on their way from Frankfurt, Ostende, and Dubai, and are expected to arrive on Monday and Tuesday, carrying an additional 120 tons of materials.

The MSF relief material that arrived this morning will be sent by trucks to the disaster areas in the coming days. However, the needs of the affected population assessed in the Irrawaddy delta area by MSF aid workers are so great that many more supplies will have to come into the country to respond to the current crisis.

MSF currently has over 100 staff members in the delta and between 10 and 20 new staff are arriving there each day. In Twantey, Bogaley, Kungyangon, Pathein (Bassein), Haigyi, and Laputta, 15 teams are now doing consultations, distributing food, plastic sheeting, and other items, and are purifying water and cleaning up sites where people have sought refuge.

In some areas, increasing constraints have been imposed on MSF by the authorities. In Bogaley, for instance, the MSF team is unable to provide as much assistance as they can in order to respond to the enormous needs in terms of food and medical care.