Cuba asks for US help after Hurricane Ian knocks out power, reports The Wall Street Journal

Cuba asks for US help after Hurricane Ian knocks out power, reports The Wall Street Journal

WASHINGTON, Sept 30 (Reuters) – The Cuban government has made a rare request for emergency aid from U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration after Hurricane Ian knocked out power to the entire island of 11 million. residents, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

Hurricane Ian swept through the island nation on Tuesday, causing power outages across the country, flattening homes and destroying agricultural fields. Cubans staged protests against the government over the power cut, which heightened concerns about shortages of food, fuel and medicine.

Washington estimated that Cuban authorities would prioritize hospitals, water-pumping facilities, sanitation and other critical infrastructure if the Biden administration were to provide aid, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing a review of email communications.

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The State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the report, nor did the Cuban embassy in Washington.

Biden has promised to reconnect with Cuba after years of tension between Havana and Washington. But Cuba’s crackdown following widespread protests on the island last July has instead led to sanctions against Cuban officials.

The Cuban government blamed the protests on US interference.

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Reporting by Rami Ayyub, Kanishka Singh and Akriti Sharma; Editing by Sandra Maler

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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