Betty on the News: Obama Declares Samoa a Disaster Zone
As the number of deaths rise, President Obama promises aid to the tsunami-ravaged South Pacific island
-Margeaux Baulch Klein
As the death toll rises in the American Territory of Samoa, President Obama has declared the tsunami-hit area a disaster zone and has ordered federal aid to supplement recovery efforts.
Over 47 people have been confirmed dead from the earthquake and tsunami that struck the island early on Tuesday morning and Bloomberg News reports that that number could rise up to 120.
“Michelle and I send our deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of those who lost their lives in the earthquake and tsunami in American Samoa and the region,” the president said.
“I am closely monitoring these tragic events, and have declared a major disaster for American Samoa, which will provide the tools necessary for a full, swift and aggressive response. The Federal Emergency Management Agency is in close and constant contact with emergency responders, and the U.S. Coast Guard is fully supporting the deployment of resources to those areas in need of immediate assistance. We also stand ready to help our friends in Samoa and the region,” he continued.
“Going forward, we will continue to provide the resources necessary to respond to this catastrophe, and we will keep those who have lost so much in our thoughts and prayers.” (Huffington Post)