Further assistance for Rakhine crisis

New Zealand will contribute a further $2.5 million for humanitarian assistance in response to the crisis in Myanmar’s Rakhine state, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced. 

“The New Zealand government is very concerned with the violence and humanitarian crisis in Rakhine State and we continue to urge the Myanmar government to do all it can to safeguard those affected.”

“The $2.5m in humanitarian assistance will provide protection and assistance for those who have fled the violence in Rakhine state to Bangladesh,” he said. 

“This additional funding brings the total amount provided by New Zealand to help those caught up in the crisis to $4m,” said Mr Peters.

Of the new funding, $500,000 will go to the World Food Programme and $1 million to the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), for life-saving food, nutrition, protection and healthcare assistance among displaced families and host communities in Cox’s Bazar District, Bangladesh.

Women and girls in particular have been impacted by this crisis and New Zealand’s funding will contribute to addressing the sexual and reproductive health needs of women and girls, as well as responding to the needs of survivors of sexual violence.

An estimated 58,000 displaced women are pregnant and require healthcare to ensure safe pregnancy, labour and delivery and humanitarian agencies are assisting survivors of sexual violence. 

The New Zealand Government will also match dollar for dollar up to $1 million for funds raised by New Zealand NGOs from the New Zealand public for this crisis.