EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides has concluded his official visit to Burma, announcing new funding of €12 million for the country as part of an overall €27 million package for the South and East Asia and Pacific.
As the first Commissioner to visit Northern Rakhine State, he called for greater access for aid organizations working in the area and visited several EU funded humanitarian projects.
“The European Union is committed to supporting those in need in Burma (Myanmar). The recent violence in Northern Rakhine State has created pressing humanitarian needs. During my visit I saw that malnutrition rates have deteriorated after the recent crisis. Our humanitarian partners are helping government authorities develop a food security and nutrition strategy for this region, but we still need better humanitarian access in order to facilitate a quick and full response by aid agencies to assist all affected communities. It is particularly important to help Rohingya civilians who have suffered involuntary displacements as well as supporting their livelihoods,” said Commissioner Stylianides.
More than half a million people in Burma need humanitarian assistance, including almost 220 000 who are living in displacement. Over €9 million of the new EU funding will provide direct humanitarian assistance to communities living in conflict-afflicted areas (including Rakhine, Shan, and Kachin States), while another €3 million will fund disaster-risk-reduction activities to strengthen the resilience of communities at risk of natural disasters.
Since 1994, the European Commission has provided €229 million in humanitarian aid to Burma.