Survivors struggle as Cyclone Mocha pummels Myanmar, Bangladesh


By UCA News Network

Cyclone Mocha left a trail of devastation in Myanmar and Bangladesh, prompting humanitarian responses from church groups and aid agencies. This story and more in this week’s podcast.

Church groups and humanitarian organizations have reached out to the victims as deadly Cyclone Mocha hit Myanmar and Bangladesh last Sunday.

In Myanmar, the death toll hit 81 as the cyclone battered the coastal region. Thousands of houses and trees were flattened but no death was reported in Bangladesh, where about 400,000 people were evacuated to safe places.

Catholic charity Karuna distributed rice, oil, onion, and tarpaulins to affected families in Rakhine state and Chin states in Myanmar. The military junta declared 17 townships in Myanmar’s western coast as a natural disaster-affected area. The cyclone was the strongest in years and it made landfall while packing winds of up to 248 kilometers per hour.

Heavy rainfall and tidal surge inundated many parts of Myanmar’s coast, and communication towers and trees as well as thousands of buildings were badly damaged. In 2008, Cyclone Nargis hit Myanmar’s Irrawaddy delta and left more than 135,000 people dead, and damaged tens of thousands of homes.