Aid flowing, but Myanmar at risk of more flooding

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Aid flowing, but Myanmar at risk of more flooding
A woman looks on from a flooded house at Nyaung Don township in Myanmar's Irrawaddy region on August 5, 2015. Tens of thousands of people huddled August 5 in monasteries and other makeshift evacuation centres in remote areas of Myanmar cut off by deadly floods, as rescuers struggled to deliver desperately needed aid. AFP PHOTO / Phyo Hein Kyaw (Photo credit should read Phyo Hein Kyaw/AFP/Getty Images)
Soldiers and rescue workers unload food aid from a military airplane in Sittwe airport in Myanmar's Rakhine state on on August 5, 2015. Tens of thousands of people huddled August 5 in monasteries and other makeshift evacuation centres in remote areas of Myanmar cut off by deadly floods, as rescuers struggled to deliver desperately needed aid. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
An elderly resident uses a rickety bamboo bridge over floodwaters to reach a house at Nyaung Don township in Myanmar's Irrawaddy region on August 5, 2015. Tens of thousands of people huddled August 5 in monasteries and other makeshift evacuation centres in remote areas of Myanmar cut off by deadly floods, as rescuers struggled to deliver desperately needed aid. AFP PHOTO / Phyo Hein Kyaw (Photo credit should read Phyo Hein Kyaw/AFP/Getty Images)
a man looks on in neck-deep floodwaters at Nyaung Don township in Myanmar's Irrawaddy region on August 5, 2015. Tens of thousands of people huddled August 5 in monasteries and other makeshift evacuation centres in remote areas of Myanmar cut off by deadly floods, as rescuers struggled to deliver desperately needed aid. AFP PHOTO / Phyo Hein Kyaw (Photo credit should read Phyo Hein Kyaw/AFP/Getty Images)
A resident swims in floodwaters at Nyaung Don township in Myanmar's Irrawaddy region on August 5, 2015. Tens of thousands of people huddled August 5 in monasteries and other makeshift evacuation centres in remote areas of Myanmar cut off by deadly floods, as rescuers struggled to deliver desperately needed aid. AFP PHOTO / Phyo Hein Kyaw (Photo credit should read Phyo Hein Kyaw/AFP/Getty Images)
Children look outside from a flooded house at Nyaung Don township in Myanmar's Irrawaddy region on August 5, 2015. Tens of thousands of people huddled August 5 in monasteries and other makeshift evacuation centres in remote areas of Myanmar cut off by deadly floods, as rescuers struggled to deliver desperately needed aid. AFP PHOTO / Phyo Hein Kyaw (Photo credit should read Phyo Hein Kyaw/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view shows massive flooding over villages near Hinthada town in Myanmar's Irrawaddy region on August 5, 2015. Tens of thousands of people huddled August 5 in monasteries and other makeshift evacuation centres in remote areas of Myanmar cut off by deadly floods, as rescuers struggled to deliver desperately needed aid. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view shows flood-affected residents gathering around a military helicopter to receive food aid at Mrauk U in Myanmar's Rakhine state on August 5, 2015.The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
A boy looks on from a flooded house at Nyaung Don township in Myanmar's Irrawaddy region on August 5, 2015. Tens of thousands of people huddled August 5 in monasteries and other makeshift evacuation centres in remote areas of Myanmar cut off by deadly floods, as rescuers struggled to deliver desperately needed aid. AFP PHOTO / Phyo Hein Kyaw (Photo credit should read Phyo Hein Kyaw/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view shows floodwaters inundating houses and vegetation in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 3, 2015. Monsoon rains have claimed the lives of hundreds of people across Asia, authorities said August 3, as rescue workers scrambled to reach remote areas of India, Pakistan and Myanmar in the wake of flash floods and landslides. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Local rescue workers transport a body, seen covered in a tarp, on a boat near Mrauk U in Myanmar's Rakhine state on August 4, 2015. Myanmar's government on August 4 admitted its 'weak' response to massive floods had hampered evacuation efforts, as rain-battered Asian nations counted the rising cost of this year's monsoon. The floods have claimed at least 46 lives and affected some 215,000 people. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
A general view shows a house submerged by floodwaters in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region on August 3, 2015. Relentless monsoon rains have triggered flash floods and landslides, destroying thousands of houses, farmland, bridges and roads -- with fast-flowing waters hampering relief efforts. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view shows floodwaters inundating houses and vegetation in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
A resident rests in a boat next to floodwaters in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region on August 3, 2015. Relentless monsoon rains have triggered flash floods and landslides, destroying thousands of houses, farmland, bridges and roads -- with fast-flowing waters hampering relief efforts. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Flood-affected residents prepare food at an evacuation camp in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Flood-affected residents rest at an evacuation camp in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Flood-affected resident sit above floodwaters in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region on August 3, 2015. Relentless monsoon rains have triggered flash floods and landslides, destroying thousands of houses, farmland, bridges and roads -- with fast-flowing waters hampering relief efforts. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Flood-affected residents use make-shift rafts to travel through floodwaters in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region on August 3, 2015. Relentless monsoon rains have triggered flash floods and landslides, destroying thousands of houses, farmland, bridges and roads -- with fast-flowing waters hampering relief efforts. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Residents wave from the roof of a flood-inundated house in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Flood-affected resident tends to her one-month old daughter at an evacuation camp in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Residents wade through floodwaters in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
A general view shows a house submerged by floodwaters in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region on August 3, 2015. Relentless monsoon rains have triggered flash floods and landslides, destroying thousands of houses, farmland, bridges and roads -- with fast-flowing waters hampering relief efforts. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view shows flooding over Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
A resident sits on high ground near a flooded area in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region on August 3, 2015. Relentless monsoon rains have triggered flash floods and landslides, destroying thousands of houses, farmland, bridges and roads -- with fast-flowing waters hampering relief efforts. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
Flood-inundated residents look on from the roof of a vehicle in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view shows floodwaters inundating houses and vegetation in Kalay, upper Myanmar's Sagaing region, on August 2, 2015. The toll from flash floods and landslides in Myanmar after days of torrential rain is likely to spike, the UN warned August 2, as monsoonal downpours brought misery to thousands across the region. AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU (Photo credit should read Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images)
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YANGON, Myanmar (AP) — Other nations and relief organizations are moving to help Myanmar cope with floods that have caused 69 deaths and affected 260,000 people after more than a month of heavy monsoon rains and a cyclone.

The director of the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, Phyu Lei Lei Tun, confirmed the figures, and warned Wednesday that the Irrawaddy Delta, the country's rice bowl, was at critical risk of calamitous flooding that could destroy paddy fields and homes as water surges down rivers from badly inundated areas further north.

At a meeting in Malaysia with foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations — of which Myanmar is a member — U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Washington would soon announce a flood relief package after consulting with Myanmar officials on how it could best be utilized.

He said the U.S. Embassy has been coordinating with Myanmar's emergency operation center, and expressed hope that there would be minimal further loss of life and disruption.

The Chinese Embassy announced on its website that a 10-member Chinese rescue team arrived Tuesday in Yangon. It said the Blue Sky Rescue Team, which it described as China's biggest non-governmental humanitarian organization, was the first international rescue team to arrive on the scene, and would head to Rakhine state, one of four areas designated disaster zones last week by President Thein Sein.

The office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees announced Tuesday in Geneva that it was surveying damage in Rakhine, where about 130,000 people displaced by several years of ethnic conflict live in poorly maintained and badly located camps. Rakhine, a coastal area, took the brunt of a cyclone late last week.

"So far teams comprising UNHCR, other U.N. and NGO staff have been able to reach camps for internally displaced people in Rakhine's provincial capital Sittwe, as well as in nearby townships such as Pauktaw and Myebon," the agency said in a statement. "In the 24 camps assessed so far, a quarter of the temporary shelters are damaged, and more than 21,000 displaced people affected as a result. Several years on from their construction, many of these shelters had become fragile and unable to withstand severe weather."

The private aid organization Doctors Without Borders said the situation was critical in several townships in Rakhine.

"Over 4,000 displaced people in Minbya are sheltering across 23 monasteries. Though immediate medical needs appear low, there is widespread damage to homes and infrastructure, and drinking water has been contaminated," it said in a statement.

Much attention has turned to the Irrawaddy Delta because of the threat from water rushing down from the north into the low-lying region, which in 2008 was devastated by Cyclone Nargis, which took about 140,000 lives.

A local official contacted in Nyaungdon, a town on the Pan Hlaing River northwest of Yangon, said schools had been closed there. He said residents, especially children and the elderly, had been moved to higher ground because the river was rising, although the town has not yet flooded.

Rescue Workers Race to Aid Myanmar Flood Victims

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