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San Juan mayor slams ‘excellent news’ comment

The mayor of the capital of Puerto Rico has hit again on the feedback of a high US official who mentioned federal efforts to assist the territory get better from the devastation of Hurricane Maria is “a good news story”.

“This is not a good news story,” Carmen Yulin Cruz informed CNN on Friday. “This is a ‘people are dying’ story’ This is a life-or-death story.”

Acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke, who helps co-ordinate US assist after Maria, mentioned on Thursday she was glad with the response thus far.

“I know it is really a good news story in terms of our ability to reach people and the limited number of deaths that have taken place in such a devastating hurricane,” Duke mentioned.

Maria, probably the most highly effective storm to hit Puerto Rico in practically 90 years, has killed a minimum of 16 individuals on the island and greater than 30 throughout the Caribbean.

As a lot of the island’s three.four million residents confronted a 10th day with out energy and struggled to search out clear water and gas, Cruz bristled at Duke’s comment.

“This is a story of a devastation that continues to worsen because people are not getting food and water,” Cruz mentioned on CNN. “It is not good news when people are dying.”

“I would ask her to come down here and visit the towns and then make a statement like that,” mentioned Cruz.

Duke arrived in Puerto Rico on Friday on a beforehand scheduled journey, becoming a member of Governor Ricardo Rossello for an aerial tour of the island.

The president was scheduled to go Puerto Rico on Tuesday, whereas Vice President Mike Pence will probably be in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands late subsequent week, an aide mentioned.

More troops, medical provides and automobiles had been on the best way to the island, however will probably be a while earlier than the US territory is again on its ft, the senior US basic appointed to guide navy reduction operations mentioned on Friday.

“We’re certainly bringing in more,” Lieutenant General Jeffrey Buchanan informed CNN on Friday, a day after he was appointed by the Pentagon to supervise the US response.

President Donald Trump defended his administration’s dealing with of the catastrophe.

“Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello just stated: “The Administration and the President, each time we have spoken, they’ve delivered …,” Trump tweeted early on Friday.

Rossello informed CNN on Friday the federal authorities has responded to his requests and that he was in common contact with the director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, however extra wanted to be carried out.

The mayor of San German, a metropolis of about 35,000 within the southwest nook of the island, challenged Rossello’s evaluation on Twitter.

“The governor is giving a message that the whole lot is resolved and isn’t true,” he said in a tweet in Spanish. “There isn’t any useful operational construction. We are alone.”

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