China releases water to alleviate drought

China will release more water from a dam from its province of Yunnan to help alleviate a drought in parts of Southeast Asia, China’s Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday, following an initial release begun last month.

The water already began being released on Monday, and will continue until the “low water period” is over, ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a daily news briefing.

China has said that the water released will benefit Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.

In Vietnam, some 1.8 million people are facing water shortages and the government says 230,000 hectares (568,000 acres) of rice has been destroyed in the central and southern regions this year.

Thailand is facing its worst water shortage in two decades, with 14 out of 76 provinces hit and large swathes of agricultural land at risk.