Burma Rips 'Chocolate Bar' Aid; US Ships Threaten to Sail

Junta rails on stingy pace of int'l donations
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 29, 2008 6:50 AM CDT
Burma Rips 'Chocolate Bar' Aid; US Ships Threaten to Sail
People line up outside an aid tent in Yangon, Myanmar, Thursday, May 29, 2008 awaiting medical treatment.    (AP Photo)

Burma's military junta ripped international cyclone relief efforts today, slamming demands for access to the disaster zone and proclaiming "The people from Irrawaddy can survive without chocolate bars donated by foreign countries," Reuters reports. The slam comes a day after a US admiral threatened to yank warships from the region if the junta wouldn't let in the aid they carried.

Without batting an eye, however, the junta railed on the world for being stingy. Current donations four weeks after the cyclone stand at $201 million, down steeply from the $2 billion pledged in the week after Indonesia's 2004 tsunami. Additionally, "There is one big nation that even extended economic sanctions although it had already been known that Myanmar was in for a very powerful storm." (More Cyclone Nargis stories.)

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