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안전한 물과 필수품 등 미얀마 구호활동 현장

2008.05.16

* Distributes clean water and vital supplies in Myanmar.
* 02 min 33 secs
* 11 May 2008

As the full extent of the damage to the Irrawaddy Delta begins to be revealed, the victims of Cyclone Nargis are struggling to deal with the new reality of their lives … in which tens of thousands have lost homes, loved ones and livelihoods.

The United Nations estimates that up to 1.9 million people are struggling to survive. Up to 100,000 people are feared dead and survivors are taking refuge in any public building that hasn’t been destroyed.

SOT Peter Salama / UNICEF Chief of Health (English)
“People are gathering in poorly organized camps and that concentration of population ends up being a real risk for diseases like measles which can be enormous killers in these environments.”
Supplies of medicine and therapeutic food are reaching Myanmar. They are vital to addressing the other potentially big killers – malaria and diarrhea.

SOT Peter Salama / UNICEF Chief of Health (English)
“These diseases all have a very important relationship with malnutrution. And it’s in fact that relationship of these infectious diseases and malnutrition that can cause death rates to sky rocket in emergencies.”

Clean drinking water is one of the most important of the life saving supplies. Three million water purification tablets have arrived in Myanmar and UNICEF continues to distribute household kits which use chlorine to make water safe for families to drink.

And it’s the water that they can’t drink that poses another risk to the survivors of cyclone Nargis.

SOT Peter Salama / UNICEF Chief of Health (English)
“This is a malaria endemic region of the world. The malaria in Myanmar is highly resistant to the basic anti malarials. The risk of really serious malaria mortality as you can imagine with these children and their families sleeping out in open or sleeping in schools and not having adequate shelter, a lot of standing water which of course is a great breeding ground for malaria-bearing mosquitoes, that risk of malaria is very real and could be a very serious epidemic in the next few days to weeks.”

With the risk of further loss of life growing ever more grave, UNICEF is working with its partners to make sure emergency supplies reach the hardest hit areas of the Irrrawaddy Delta as quickly as possible.



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