Obama declares federal state of emergency in Florida

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US President Barack Obama has declared a state of emergency in the state of Florida as Hurricane Matthew strengthens on its way to the country’s southeastern coast.

Obama on Thursday ordered federal aid to supplement response efforts following the devastating storm.

He also authorized the Homeland Security Department and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to coordinate efforts to alleviate the suffering caused by the hurricane.

Officials said the declaration is designed to help provide emergency services to protect lives and to lessen the threat of a catastrophe.

Eelier, authorities issued warnings for millions of residents in several coastal states along the Atlantic Ocean to evacuate.

The fiercest Caribbean storm in nearly a decade has been forecast to inflict significant damage on the southeastern US starting Thursday and continuing into the weekend.

Over 12 million US residents were under hurricane watches and warnings, according to the…

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