MYANMAR

(BURMA)

In 2008, Cyclone Nargis caused the worst natural disaster in the recorded history of Burma (officially known as Myanmar). The cyclone killed at least 138,000 people, primarily in the Irawaddy Delta, caused millions of dollars in damage, and compromised thousands of wells and ponds used for drinking and irrigation.

Although the Burmese government’s official death toll was high, international observers fear that it was grossly underreported as the government simply stopped counting the dead to minimize political fallout. It is quite possible that due to lack of government relief efforts, and their refusal of foreign assistance, a total of a million people died from this catastrophe. Damage was estimated at over $10 billion (USD), which makes it the most damaging cyclone ever recorded in the Indian Ocean basin.

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