Opposition Day — [12th Allotted Day]
Virendra Sharma (Ealing, Southall, Labour)
I apologise that I was not in the Chamber earlier. I was in another meeting and therefore missed many of the contributions from my right hon. and hon. Friends. I am sure that all issues have been covered, whatever I have heard so far.
As an immigrant from India, a neighbouring country, I understand the impact that the current disaster and previous political actions have had not only in Burma, but in neighbouring countries. I am glad that the Indian Government have taken initiatives to provide assistance to the Burmese people, although the current Burmese military regime has not accepted assistance and is creating blockages. It is important that the international community should not only take action to overcome the disaster and help the communities affected now, but ensure that political action is taken to bring forward a more democratic system in Burma; otherwise, the Burmese will continue to suffer not only from natural disasters, but from human disasters.
It is important that the international community should come together to ensure not only that assistance is given to the communities affected, but that the military regime over there is tackled. I am certainly glad to see that the Government have taken initiatives to offer support and will continue to work with hon. Members from all parts of the House to ensure that those people are helped. I will certainly support the Government on that point.