The UN reacted furiously last night to Burma's military government confiscating food aid intended for more than a million victims of last week's cyclone. Two planeloads were impounded by the junta, prompting a temporary suspension in deliveries. UN flights were resumed last night, in the hope that negotiations would lead to a resolution.
Gordon Brown called the Burmese action "utterly unacceptable". He stopped short of joining France and the US in calling for aid deliveries without Burmese permission, although pressure within his government for such a move is growing.
- Guardian, 10 May 2008
The regime, known today as the State Peace and Development Council, cannot forget that 82 per cent of Burmese voted against them in the 1990 election: they know that the vast majority of their countrymen are deeply estranged from them.
The huge demonstrations by monks last year showed that, however cowed and bullied, ordinary Burmese are angry enough to rebel. The generals fear the ordinary people could rise up again at any time - and that a flood of foreign aid workers could be the spark to ignite the next revolt.
- Independent, 10 May 2008