Cyclone Nargis kill thousands
Cyclone toll tops 10,000 in Burma
Burma appeals for international aid
''Information is still being collected, and there could be more casualties,'' Nyan Win said, after briefing foreign diplomats.
Nyan Win welcomed Thailand's promise to send immediate emergency supplies. ''We will welcome help like this from other countries, because our people are in difficulty,'' he said.
State radio said the number of confirmed dead in the country's low-lying Irrawaddy river delta had reached 3,939, and that almost 3,000 people in a single town there were unaccounted for.
Foreign diplomats said Burmese officials appealed for international assistance, including urgently needed roofing materials, plastic sheets and temporary tents, medicine, water purifying tablets, blankets and mosquito nets.
The diplomats said the foreign minister acknowledged 59 deaths in the country's largest city of Rangoon.
UN officials said hundreds of thousands of people were without shelter and drinking water in the five declared disaster zones, which are home to 24 million people.
The state report said rescue workers had not yet been able to gauge the full scope of the devastation caused by Cyclone Nargis, which hit the area with winds of 190kph. They were still trying to make contact with hard-hit islands and villages in the delta, the rice bowl for the nation of 53 million.
The country's military leaders, in the isolated new capital of Naypyidaw, 400km north of Rangoon, said they will go ahead with Saturday's referendum on a new army-drafted constitution that critics say will entrench the military's hold on the country.
In Rangoon, food and fuel prices soared as aid agencies scrambled to deliver emergency supplies and assess the damage.
Thousands of buildings were flattened as the furious cyclone also ripped power lines to shreds, uprooted trees that blocked key roads and cut water supplies.
Older citizens said they had never seen Rangoon, a city of about 6.5 million, so devastated.
With the city's already unstable electricity supply virtually non-functional, citizens lined up to buy candles, which doubled in price, as well as water since a lack of electricity-driven pumps left most households dry. Some walked to the city's lakes to wash.
The United Nations said the situation outside Rangoon was ''critical, with shelter and safe water being the principal immediate needs''.
In Bangkok, the government said the first planeload of emergency assistance will leave for Rangoon this afternoon.
Foreign Affairs Minister Noppadon Pattama said Thailand will send US$100,000 (about 3.1 million baht) in aid, in addition to the medicines and food to be given by the military.
Lt-Gen Nipat Thonglek said the army will donate medicine and ready-to-eat meals from the military's supplies.
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