Aid on the way for Irma-battered Caribbean resort islands

Hurricane Irma: 1200 Americans Evacuated from St. Martin

Hurricane Irma: 1200 Americans Evacuated from St. Martin

Ravaged by Hurricane Irma, Saint Martin and Saint Barts escaped a further battering by Jose, which had "markedly less" of an impact on the two Caribbean islands than anticipated, France's meteorological agency said yesterday.

A picture shows a wrecked auto in the streets of Marigot, on September 9, 2017 in Saint-Martin island devastated by Irma hurricane.

A French minister said she witnessed looting close up.

Before the hurricanes, St. Maarten's Princess Juliana International Airport was one of the former Dutch colony's major tourist draws thanks to a runway that ended just a few meters (yards) from the sandy crescent of Maho Beach, where people could stand and watch as arriving jets skimmed low over their heads.

Willem-Alexander is scheduled to fly Tuesday to the nearby Dutch islands of Saba and St. Eustatius, which also were hit by Irma, but suffered less damage than St. Martin.

Many people were looking for ways off the islands.

But he added there had been "no new damage" caused by Hurricane Jose, which skirted the islands far to the north late Saturday.

In addition to the 410 constables and 80 police officers already on-site, approximately 240 police constables, additional are going to be deployed to Saint-Martin and Saint-Barthélemy was reported by the newspaper Le Parisien.

Collomb said the pillaging that hit St. Martin after Irma has stopped. That would bring the total number of security personnel to 550.

To the east, in the Leeward Islands known as the playground for the rich and famous, governments came under criticism for failing to respond quickly to the hurricane, which flattened many towns and turned lush, green hills to brown stubble.

Macron held an emergency meeting later Saturday about Irma and approaching Hurricane Jose, and Prime Minister Edouard Philippe insisted that the government's support for Irma's victims isn't "empty words".

France's main electricity provider EDF says it transported 140 tons of electrical equipment to help restore the power supply on St. Martin and St. Barts.

"We can't sleep in peace because of the thieves", said 48-year-old Yovanny Roque.

The Dutch military dropped fliers on the island Saturday urging people to get into shelters as the storm passed, according to a tweet from a Dutch military commander.

Caretaker Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte had said on Sunday an estimated 70 percent of buildings were damaged or destroyed.

Military cargo planes or aid flights were expected to pick up stranded Dutch tourists later Sunday and take them to Curacao, from where they would be able to catch flights home.

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