Puerto Rico

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11 Dead, 31 Rescued After Helicopter Spots Capsized Boat

Boat loaded with suspected migrants overturned near Puerto Rico

(Newser) - A boat loaded with suspected migrants capsized north of an uninhabited island near Puerto Rico and 11 people had been confirmed dead while 20 men and 11 women were rescued Thursday, authorities said. It wasn't immediately clear how many people were aboard the boat when it turned over, said...

Supreme Court Shuts Puerto Ricans Out of Benefits

Majority notes federal income tax doesn't apply to the territory, either

(Newser) - The Supreme Court has upheld the differential treatment of residents of Puerto Rico, ruling that Congress was within its power to exclude them from a benefits program that's available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The court held by an 8-1 vote Thursday that making Puerto...

Puerto Rico's 'Fragile' Grid Sees Major Blackout After Fire

More than 1 million customers are without power across the island

(Newser) - More than a million customers in Puerto Rico remained without electricity on Thursday after a fire at a main power plant caused the biggest blackout so far this year across the US territory, forcing it to cancel classes and shutter government offices. The blackout also left some 160,000 customers...

'Today Begins a New Chapter' in Puerto Rico's History

Long bankruptcy battle finally resolved

(Newser) - Puerto Rico’s nearly five-year bankruptcy battle was resolved Tuesday after a federal judge signed a plan that slashes the US territory’s public debt load as part of a restructuring and allows the government to start repaying creditors. The plan marks the largest municipal debt restructuring in US history...

Man Allegedly Chokes, Kicks Flight Attendant, Asks to Be Shot

Khalil El Dahr was reportedly angered after an in-flight call didn't go through

(Newser) - A passenger tried to rush the cockpit of a JetBlue flight on Wednesday before kicking and choking a flight attendant, according to an FBI affidavit . The man identified as Khalil El Dahr had become angry after trying unsuccessfully to make a phone call about an hour before the flight from...

Puerto Rican Boxer Allegedly Killed Pregnant Girlfriend

Félix Verdejo turns himself in

(Newser) - Puerto Rican boxer Félix Verdejo turned himself in to federal agents to face federal charges Sunday night just hours after authorities identified the body of a dead woman as his 27-year-old pregnant lover, officials said. The US Attorney's Office said late Sunday that Verdejo was being charged with...

Puerto Rico Statehood Is Back on the Table

Democratic lawmakers introduce a new proposal

(Newser) - Two Democratic lawmakers on Tuesday announced they will be introducing legislation to make Puerto Rico a state. Sen. Martin Heinrich of New Mexico and Rep. Darren Soto of Florida say the bill has around 50 co-sponsors, CBS News reports. It would set up a process for the US territory to...

Iconic Telescope Has Collapsed
Iconic Telescope Has Collapsed 

Iconic Telescope Has Collapsed

Officials: Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico has met its end after auxiliary cable broke in August

(Newser) - The scientific community and stargazers at large had been trying to save an iconic radio telescope , but those efforts have now come to an end after Puerto Rico officials announced the telescope has collapsed. Per CBS News , the huge Arecibo Observatory fell to its ruin Tuesday, less than two weeks...

They Know the Risks. They Want to Save Telescope Anyway

Petition, letter to Congress part of efforts to keep Arecibo landmark from being demolished

(Newser) - News last week that an iconic radio telescope that has gazed upon the cosmos for nearly six decades would be decommissioned and demolished has hit the scientific community hard, and now it's fighting to keep the astronomy landmark alive. The telescope at the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico sustained...

Arecibo Radio Telescope Can't Be Saved
Famed Telescope
Can't Be Saved

Famed Telescope Can't Be Saved

Cables are failing at astronomy landmark in Puerto Rico

(Newser) - The iconic radio telescope at the Arecibo Observatory is being taken out of commission. Cables hold up a 900-ton equipment platform over the telescope's huge reflector dish, and those cables have begun to fail. One broke this month, after an auxiliary cable had slipped out of its socket in...

Puerto Rico Finds Thousands of Uncounted Votes

'Misplaced. Poorly organized. We have to admit that'

(Newser) - In a development that will have no effect whatsoever on the presidential race, thousands of uncounted ballots from American citizens have been found a week after Election Day. The election commission in Puerto Rico says more than 100 briefcases holding uncounted votes have been found since Nov. 3, which could...

51st State? Puerto Rico Again Votes on Status

It's Election Day in the US territory, too

(Newser) - Voters across Puerto Rico on Tuesday are choosing new leaders they hope can help heal a US territory wracked by corruption, hurricanes, earthquakes, and the coronavirus pandemic, per the AP . Also on the ballot is the island's sixth referendum on whether to change its current territorial status. Voters will...

Report: FEMA Took Weeks to Get Food, Water to Puerto Rico

Provisions delivered to island included candy and cookies

(Newser) - A US government report published Thursday found that the Federal Emergency Management Agency mismanaged the distribution of goods in Puerto Rico after hurricanes Irma and Maria, leading to delays in the delivery of food and water. The Office of the Inspector General said that it took more than two months...

Dems: Trump's $13B Aid to Puerto Rico Is for Votes

3 years after hurricanes, some say surprise relief package is 'too little and too late'

(Newser) - In 2017, Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria ravaged Puerto Rico. It took nearly a year to restore power to the entire island, with a final death toll said to be around 3,000, though Trump has pushed back on that number. Now, three years after the storms, the president is...

Marco Is a Hurricane, and It's Not Alone

Tropical Storm Laura is also headed for the US coast

(Newser) - Marco became a hurricane over the Gulf of Mexico Sunday on a path toward the Louisiana coast. Tropical Storm Laura battered the Dominican Republic and Haiti and headed to the same part of the US coast, also as a potential hurricane, the AP reports. It would be the first time...

Ex-Official: Trump Wanted to Swap 'Dirty' Puerto Rico for Greenland

Taylor says he doesn't believe the president was joking

(Newser) - A former Department of Homeland Security official says he heard President Trump propose trading Puerto Rico for Greenland—and he doesn't believe the president was joking. In an interview with MSNBC 's Hallie Jackson Wednesday, Miles Taylor, former DHS chief of staff, was asked for the "most...

Puerto Rico's Botched Primary Ends With Governor Losing

Second round of voting goes more smoothly

(Newser) - Puerto Rican Gov. Wanda Vázquez on Sunday acknowledged losing the primary of her pro-statehood party to Pedro Pierluisi, who briefly served as the US territory's governor last year amid political turmoil. With more than 78% of electoral colleges reporting late Sunday, Pierluisi received more than 57% of the...

Puerto Ricans Try Again to Vote
Puerto Ricans Try
Again to Vote

Puerto Ricans Try Again to Vote

Some polling places for primary never opened a week ago

(Newser) - Thousands of Puerto Ricans on Sunday got a second chance to vote for the first time, a week after delayed and missing ballots marred the original primaries in a blow to the US territory's democracy. More than 60 of the island's 110 precincts opened following a US Supreme...

While Trying to Vote, Puerto Rico Gets Utterly Shafted Again

Primary was a total mess; voting halted at some centers, and will need to be rescheduled

(Newser) - Puerto Ricans demanded answers Monday after botched primaries forced officials to reschedule voting at centers lacking ballots, an unprecedented decision being called a blow to the US territory's democracy. The island’s elections commission remained silent as anger and embarrassment spread across Puerto Rico one day after hundreds of...

4.9 Quake Unnerves Puerto Rico
Another Quake
Shakes Puerto Rico


Another Quake Shakes Puerto Rico

Aftershock renews fear, town's mayor says

(Newser) - A 4.9-magnitude earthquake struck just southwest of Puerto Rico on Friday. There were no reported casualties. The quake was felt across the US territory and is the latest in a series of tremors that began in late December and have damaged or destroyed hundreds of homes, the AP reports....

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