Bangkok - Thailand on Tuesday flew more than 300,000 dollars worth of medical and food aid to neighbouring Myanmar, which is still reeling from the impact of cyclone Nargis that claimed an estimated 15,000 lives.
"We are the first country to provide Myanmar with aid," said Thai Foreign Minister Noppodon Pattama, who earlier in the day met with the Myanmar ambassador to Thailand and handed him a cheque for 100,000 dollars.
A Thai Airforce C-130 military transport plane departed Don Muang Airport mid-day Tuesday bound for Yangon, loaded with 10 million baht (317,000 dollars) worth of medicine and medical kits as well as food - canned fish, instant noodles, eggs, packs of rice - and bottled water.
Myanmar ambassador to Thailand U Ye Win told Noppodon that cyclone Nargis had killed at least 10,000 people and left 30,000 missing.
However, officials in Yangon said Tuesday that the death toll was now closer to 15,000, and missing stood at 3,000.
Thailand has tightened its relations with Myanmar, deemed a pariah state by most western democracies, since Samak Sundaravej became Thai Prime Minister and set up a pro-business cabinet.
Thailand is one of Myanmar's main trading partners, importing more than 2 billion dollars of natural gas from Myanmar each year.
Besides Thailand, India has sent two ships with relief supplies and was also considering airlifting emergency materials to Myanmar.
China and Singapore have also promised to airfreight emergency aid to Myanmar.
Various United Nations agencies met in Bangkok Tuesday to organize a major disaster relief programme for the country, where hundreds-of-thousands have been left homeless by Nargis, that struck Myanmar's central region on Friday and Saturday, causing one of the worst natural disasters in South-East Asia since the 2004 tsunami. (dpa)