Myanmar to let Asian neighbors coordinate relief

From a Times Staff Writer

The government of Myanmar agreed Monday to allow the 10-member Assn. of Southeast Asian Nations to coordinate international cyclone relief efforts in cooperation with the United Nations, according to Singapore’s foreign minister, George Yong-Boon Yeo.

Myanmar also agreed at an ASEAN meeting to accept medical teams from ASEAN countries, several of which have already sent doctors. Yeo didn’t say how the agreements would affect the way non-ASEAN aid is received and distributed, details that may be worked out in further negotiations.

“We will establish a mechanism so that aid from all over the world can flow into Myanmar,” Yeo told reporters, adding that relief workers from non-ASEAN countries would be allowed in only for “specific needs.”

“There will not be uncontrolled access,” Yeo said.