Donald Trump has threatened to stop giving money to the people fighting wildfires in California that have so far killed nine people.
At least 250,000 people have been forced to flee their homes as three massive fires rip their way across the state.
The city of Paradise has been almost completely incinerated by the flames, and authorities have so far confirmed the deaths of nine people, some of whom were in their cars when they perished.
There is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly forest fires in California except that forest management is so poor. Billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests. Remedy now, or no more Fed payments!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 10, 2018
The state’s most destructive fire in at least a century has burned down more than 6,700 buildings, almost all of them homes.
Trump has so far not visited any of the affected areas, as he is currently in France for the centenary of the end of the First World War, but today cancelled a visit to a cemetery because it was raining.
Trump approved an emergency declaration on Friday, which provides air support, relief supplies and evacuation transport, but warned he may not do the same again in the future.
He said the reason he wanted to withhold federal payments to California was because its forest management is ‘so poor.’
He tweeted: ‘There is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly fires in California. Billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests. Remedy now, or no more Fed payments!’
So far nine people have been confirmed dead as the flames rip across California (Picture: AFP/Getty)
More than 250,000 have been forced to flee their homes (Picture: AFP/Getty)
The city of Paradise has been almost completely destroyed (Picture: Getty)
Trump is currently in France for the centenary of the end of the First World War, but today cancelled a visit to a cemetery because it was raining (Picture: PA)There was a lull in the flames today which gave firefighters a chance to control the edges of the Hill and Woolsley fires and to swap fire crews, replacing firefighters who had worked for two days without rest, Los Angeles County Fire Chief Daryl Osby said.
But with the winds returning, it’s likely more homes will be lost, Osby warned.
Trump blocks illegal migrants from seeking asylum in the US‘There’s not going to be any relief in this firefight,’ he said.
By late Friday night, the smaller Hill fire’s advance had halted, but the Woolsey fire surged and doubled in size in hours – turning well over 54 square miles into ash and fields of glowing red embers.
This is not the first time Trump has tweeted that he would remove the funding.
Trump has threatened to take away the funding for firefighters (Picture: AP)
He made a similar threat during wildfires which raged in August (Picture: AP)
He also claimed that the mismanagement was costing the US hundreds of billions of dollars (Picture: AP)In August he tweeted: ‘California wildfires are being magnified & made so much worse by the bad environmental laws which aren’t allowing massive amounts of readily available water to be properly utilized.
‘It is being diverted into the Pacific Ocean. Must also tree clear to stop fire from spreading!’
Children’s lives are being ‘destroyed’ by the escalating war in YemenBut fire officials and experts said that what Trump was proposing was not correct, and they had plenty of water to fight the fire with.
He also criticised California’s handling of forest fires at a Cabinet meeting on October 17, when he called the state ‘a mess’ and ‘disgraceful,’ reports ABC news.
He said: ‘It’s costing our country hundreds of billions of dollars because of incompetence in California.’
It was unclear where Trump was getting his figures from as the budget for the California Fire department for 2018-19 is $2.4 billion (Picture: AFP/Getty)
In a Cabinet meeting Trump added: ‘I say to the governor, or whoever is going to be the governor, of California: You better get your act together.’ (Picture: AFP/Getty)
Some of those who died were trying to flee the flames in their cars (Picture: AFP/Getty)It was unclear where Trump was getting his figures from as the budget for the California Fire department for 2018-19 is $2.4 billion (£1.8 billion).
In the Cabinet meeting Trump added: ‘I say to the governor, or whoever is going to be the governor, of California: You better get your act together.
Flash floods kill 11 in Jordan as around 4,000 tourists are forced to flee‘Because California, we’re just not going to continue to pay the kind of money that we’re paying because of fires that should never be to the extent they are.’
Trump and the current governor of California, Jerry Brown, have long feuded, and he is set to be replaced by fellow Democrat and antagonist Gavin Newsom, who was elected last week.
Newsom was previously married to ex-Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle, who is now in a relationship with Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr.
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