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Save Lives from Ike a Priority for Cuba
Over 70,000 people, including Civil Defense personnel and troops from the Revolutionary Armed Forces, have been actively working to protect civilians from Ike, which Sunday night hit the northeastern Cuban province of Holguin as a Category 3 hurricane.

According to Colonel Jose Betancourt, the Civil Defense has all necessary resources, including transportation and machinery to take the population to safety.

Betancourt added that 1,700 shelters and 900 food processing centers have been opened to help people that may be affected by Ike.

Over 200,000 people have been evacuated to shelters so far. All of them have already been guaranteed food, water and medical attention, the Civil Defense officer said on national television.

He also called the population to observe measures aimed at preserving lives and protecting economic resources.

A hurricane warning is in effect for 11 of the 14 Cuban provinces, while the remaining two are observing a hurricane watch.

In Haiti, at least 47 people died as Ike's winds and rain swept the storm-hit Caribbean state, whose death toll from four tropical storms in less than a month has now risen to 306.


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