A new nonprofit organization headed by a group of cross-party Japanese lawmakers and other officials aims to raise money to directly aid people suffering in Myanmar while also lobbying for a return to democracy in the wake of a February 2021 coup that put the nation under the grip of a military dictatorship.

The Myanmar International Assistance Organization plans to work with local NGOs that have better access to deliver supplies such as food and medicine. The group also intends to work across borders with the Japan-Myanmar Friendship Association, the Thai-Japan Education Development Foundation and other entities.

Speaking at a news conference Wednesday, Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker Ichiro Aisawa, one of the group's directors, expressed his desire to use the means available to them to "report the reality on the ground to the Foreign Ministry or the government."