Speaking to UN News, the organization’s senior aid official at MyanmarActing Humanitarian Coordinator and Resident Coordinator Ramanathan Balakrishnan described how people across the country have been deeply affected since the military junta seized power on 1 February.
#Myanmar Human update:
▶ More than 220,000 people displaced by conflict and insecurity since 1 February.
▶ More than thousands of people affected by the recent floods.
▶️ Humanitarian response is ongoing, but limited by access challenges and lack of funds.
– Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Myanmar (Ochamienmar) 30 July 2021
The situation in the country is distinguished now Instability and a deteriorating social, economic and security situation And to add to that we have The third wave of COVID-19Mr. Balakrishnan said in an exclusive interview.
Highlighting the ongoing nature of armed resistance to state security forces “in many ethnic minority areas” including in Shan, Chin and Kachin states, the UN official said more than 200,000 people have been uprooted there so far.
In Rakhine State before the coup, the United Nations humanitarian response plan He cited about a million people including displaced people in need of urgent assistance, but “that number has only swelled,” Mr. Balakrishnan insisted.
More broadly, “After the coup, An additional 2 million people have been identified as in urgent need of humanitarian assistanceMost of them were in the urban areas of Yangon and Mandalay,” he said, adding that the intensification of clashes and the deteriorating socio-economic situation is pushing “tens of thousands of people” into the humanitarian space “every day.”
Repeated concerns about rights violations by the United Nations Children’s Fund UNICEF Mr. Balakrishnan condemned the continued and widespread use of lethal force by the military against civilian demonstrators.
Looking to the future, the relief official said, the UN’s priorities include ensuring that millions of people do not fall into more hunger. “There has been an increase in commodity prices for a lot of people… and it has also resulted in decrease in nutritional value from the food basket that people usually take away because they are replacing their usual food with cheaper and more readily available items.”
Turning to the health system in Myanmar, which is facing severe pressure due to Corona Virus crisis, as well attacks On medical personnel and facilities in Myanmar – and the civil disobedience movement by some health professionals – Mr. Balakrishnan warned that even basic services were disrupted across the country.
Stand with the people of Myanmar
In a message of solidarity, the senior aid official insisted that the United Nations remains committed to respecting the will of the country’s people.
This was despite limited access to parts of the country linked to security concerns and disruption of the banking system, which has limited the ability of the United Nations to funnel funds to humanitarian partners responsible for providing aid.
“The United Nations will continue to advocate for human rights abuses and is committed to the survival and provision of life-saving humanitarian assistance to the people of Myanmar.In addition to sending the COVID-19 response, Mr. Balakrishnan said.