Relief aid reaches areas beyond government control in Myanmar

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A scene at the Warabung displaced persons camp in Kachin State, northern Myanmar December 2011. Credit: IRIN

For the first time in nearly a year, relief assistance is reaching areas beyond government control in Myanmar's Kachin State, according to the United Nations relief agency (OCHA).

The agency says Myanmar authorities have authorized a convoy to deliver assistance to the people in need in the State where government troops are fighting armed rebels.

OCHA Spokesperson Jens Laerke says the convoy is moving to deliver urgent humanitarian relief to displaced people in Kachin State.

"It was a 10-truck relief convoy which departed the town of Bhamo town two days ago. It is providing relief to camps along the way to a place called Maija Yang. We are trying to assist some 5, 100 people with life-saving items which include food, household kits, hygiene, sanitation supplies. UNICEF has some material on that convoy, micronutrients or rehydration salts, aqua taps, that sort of relief we are delivering." (28")

OCHA says that since June 2011 approximately 100,000 people have fled their homes as a result of fighting between the Kachin Independence Organization and the Government of Myanmar.

An estimated 60,000 of the people displaced are living in areas beyond the Government's control.

Donn Bobb, United Nations

Duration: 1'12"

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