Donald Trump blasts 'nasty' San Juan mayor over hurricane response criticism
A week ago, category four Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, killing 16 people and leaving millions more in need of help.
It is the latest in a string of devastating natural disasters to have wrought havoc in recent weeks, after the unprecedented scenes of flooding in Houston, and brutal tempests that hit the Caribbean and Florida.
It would seem that, as time continues to drag on, the situation in Puerto Rico is becoming ever more fraught, and San Juan mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz has issued a desperate call for aid in the wake of the devastation;
"I am asking the president of the United States to make sure somebody is in charge that is up to the task of saving lives.
"I am done being polite. I am done being politically correct. I am mad as hell." She said in a news conference.
Mayor Cruz expressed her disbelief that a country with the rescources of the United States could not organise itself with more urgency to help those trapped in Puerto Rico;
“We are dying here, and I cannot fathom the thought that the greatest nation in the world cannot figure out logistics for a small island of 100 miles by 35 miles".
In emotionally charged scenes, she continued;
“I am going to do what I never thought I would do. I am begging, begging anyone who can hear us to save us from dying.
“We are dying, and you are killing us with inefficiency and bureaucracy.”
The BBC has reported the mayor as suggesting that the island will be without power for six to eight months as a result of the disaster, and it is believed that half of the 3.4 million people living on the island are currently without drinking water.
President Trump, though, appears to have taken exception to the notion that his government is not doing enough to help Puerto Rico in the wake of the hurricane.
Taking to Twitter, Donald Trump seemed to lash out at Mayor Cruz when he wrote;
"The Mayor of San Juan, who was very complimentary only a few days ago, has now been told by the Democrats that you must be nasty to Trump."
"...Such poor leadership ability by the Mayor of San Juan, and others in Puerto Rico, who are not able to get their workers to help. They...."
Before completing the thought in a following tweet;
"...want everything to be done for them when it should be a community effort. 10,000 Federal workers now on Island doing a fantastic job."
The President also appeared to suggest that certain news outlets' coverage of the disaster response effort was unfair;
"The Fake News Networks are working overtime in Puerto Rico doing their best to take the spirit away from our soldiers and first R's. Shame!"
Mayor Cruz appeared on CNBC to maintain that the island needed help, "“Actually, I was asking for help,” she explained, "I wasn’t saying anything nasty about the president.”. She says we will continue to do "whatever I need to" to help those in trouble.