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President Trump Taking Tough Stance Against Evacuees from Hurricane-Hit Bahamas, Saying He’s Keeping “Bad” People out of the US

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WASHINGTON, United States, Tuesday September 10, 2019 – Hurricane or not, Bahamians impacted by Hurricane Dorian will not be given any special treatment to enter the United States because, as President Donald Trump says, there are “bad people” there – like gang members and drug dealers – that he has to ensure don’t get in his country.

He made his government’s position clear while speaking to reporters outside the White House yesterday, a week after the Category 5 Hurricane Dorian devastated the Bahamian islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama, and left at least 50 people dead so far, with the death toll increasing daily.

Almost 5,000 residents have been evacuated from the hurricane-hit islands to New Providence, where more than 70 per cent of the Bahamian population lives. Some Bahamians have been trying to get into the US, and a few days ago, several of them were ordered off a cruise vessel heading to Florida, because they did not have US visas.

“Everyone needs total, proper documentation because, look, The Bahamas has some tremendous problems with people going to The Bahamas [who] weren’t supposed to be there,” Trump said yesterday. “I don’t want to allow people who weren’t supposed to be in The Bahamas to come into the United States, including some very bad people and some very bad gang members and some very, very bad drug dealers, so we are going to be very, very strong on that.”

“Large sections, believe it or not, of The Bahamas were not hit, and what we’re doing is bringing the people to those sections of The Bahamas that have not been hit. We’ve done a lot of the USAID, we’ve done a lot of work with our Coast Guard, with our FEMA [Federal Emergency Management Agency] people who have been phenomenal…so, we’ll see what happens,” he added.

However, following the incident with Bahamians being ordered off the ship that was headed to Florida, the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said nearly 1,500 evacuees who had already arrived at the Port of Palm Beach, Florida, were processed “without incident”.

Subsequently, Acting Commissioner of the CBP, Mark Morgan said the US would allow Bahamians, whose “life is in jeopardy”, entry to the United States “whether you have travel documents or not”.

“We will accept anyone on humanitarian reasons that needs to come here. We will process them expeditiously,” he said, adding that evacuees who are “deemed to be inadmissible,” such as criminals or individuals who were denied entry to the US previously, would not be allowed entry. “We’re going to process them like we normally would.”

Meantime, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) in The Bahamas said yesterday that there have been no new arrangements made between The Bahamas and any other jurisdiction to facilitate relaxed entry of Bahamians.

Spokesperson Carl Smith said Hurricane Dorian survivors seeking to travel to the US or Canada from the impacted islands would need to have all the usual and standard documentation to gain entry.

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Hurricane Humberto Getting Stronger as it Nears Bermuda

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HAMILTON, Bermuda, Wednesday September 18,
2019
– Hurricane force winds are expected
to reach Bermuda this evening, as a larger and stronger Humberto moves
closer to the island.

The impending hurricane, at Category 3
strength with maximum sustained winds now near 120 miles per hour, has forced
the closure of government offices and schools and cancellation of evening
flights at the airport.

In its 11 a.m. advisory, the National
Hurricane Centre (NHC) said Hurricane Humberto was located 195 miles west of
the island, and was moving towards the east northeast at 16 miles per hour.

It is expected to remain a major
hurricane through early tomorrow. And the core of Jerry is expected to pass
just to the northwest and north of the island tonight. The Bermuda Weather
Service has forecast that its closest point to the island will be 101 miles to
the northwest at 8 p.m.

“Some fluctuations in intensity are likely during
the next day or so, but Humberto should remain a powerful hurricane through
early Thursday while it passes close to Bermuda.  A steady weakening trend should begin later
on Thursday,” the NHC said.

Humberto is a large hurricane and continues to grow
in size. Hurricane-force winds now extend outward up to 105 miles from the centre
and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles based on reports
from a Hurricane Hunter aircraft.

The NHC said a prolonged period of dangerous winds
is expected on Bermuda from late this afternoon through tomorrow morning, with
hurricane-force winds expected overnight tonight.

It added that storm surge and dangerous breaking waves could cause coastal flooding tonight and tomorrow along the southern coast of Bermuda.

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Eastern Caribbean Embarks on Strategy Towards a Blue-Green Economy

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The Caribbean green-blue economy strategy and action plan will make the most of the sub- region’s strengths, harnessing these to create economies that are environmentally friendly and at the same time more socially equitable. (Photo Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS)

In this Voices from the Global South podcast, IPS takes you to the Caribbean where correspondent Jewel Fraser learns how micro, small and medium enterprises hold the key for building economies that are resilient to the impacts of climate change.

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Tropical Storm Jerry Forms East of the Leeward Islands

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FLORIDA, United States, Wednesday September
18, 2019
– Tropical
Storm Jerry formed this morning, becoming the 10th named storm of
the Atlantic hurricane season. And by the time it’s near the Leeward Islands in
the next day or two, it’s expected to have strengthened into a hurricane.

The National
Hurricane Centre (NHC) in Miami reported in its first advisory on Tropical
Storm Jerry at 5 a.m., that it was located about 960 miles east of the Leeward
Islands and moving towards the west northwest at 13 miles per hour.

Maximum
sustained winds were at 45 miles per hour, and additional strengthening is forecast
during the next couple of days. A west-northwestward motion at a slightly
faster forward speed is expected over the next few days. 

“On the
forecast track, the system will be near the northern Leeward Islands Thursday
night or Friday…. Jerry is expected to become a hurricane by the time it moves
near the northern Leeward Islands,” the NHC said.

It added
that although it is too soon to determine if there will be any direct impacts
on the islands, interests in the northern Leeward Islands should monitor the progress
of this system and have their hurricane plans in place.

Apart from Hurricane Humberto which is expected to pass just to the northwest and north of Bermuda tonight, there are two other areas of interest in the Atlantic.

A tropical
wave located several hundred miles west of the Cabo Verde Islands is producing
disorganized cloudiness and showers. Some development of that system is possible
over the weekend while the system approaches the Windward Islands or across the
southeastern Caribbean Sea early next week.

A tropical wave is also forecast to move off of the west coast of Africa tomorrow.  Development, if any, is expected to be slow to occur through early next week while the system moves generally westward at 10 to 15 miles per hour.

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