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Press Release

Trump Calls for Puerto Rico's Debt to be "Wiped Out"

WASHINGTON -

In an interview with Fox News on Tuesday, President Trump called for Puerto Rico's debt to be wiped out. "They owe a lot of money to your friends on Wall Street and we're going to have to wipe that out. You're going to say goodbye to that, I don't know if it's Goldman Sachs, but whoever it is you can wave goodbye to that," Trump said.‎

"Puerto Rico can't recover with the debt it has," said Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of the religious development organization Jubilee USA. LeCompte worked on emergency Puerto Rico debt crisis legislation that Congress passed last year. "Puerto Rico was already undergoing a bankruptcy process that was going to substantially cut the island's debt. Now that bankruptcy process needs to access the hurricane damage and cancel even more of the debt."

Just yesterday, religious leaders from Puerto Rico and the US Virgin islands issued a statement calling for aid, debt relief and measures to end child poverty. The statement was signed by San Juan's Catholic Archbishop, Roberto González Nieves, St. Thomas' Catholic Bishop Herbert A. Bevard and Evangelical Bible Society Head Reverend Heriberto Martínez. Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, both US territories, were wrestling with financial crisis and high child poverty rates before the Hurricanes Irma and Maria struck.

"The US Virgin islands were also severely damaged from the hurricanes," continued LeCompte. "They too need debt forgiveness and aid to help recover. Unfortunately, unlike Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands doesn't have a bankruptcy process to cut the debt."

Read the religious leaders' statement in Englishen español
 
Read Eric LeCompte's statement on the crisis

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Jubilee USA Network is an interfaith, non-profit alliance of religious, development and advocacy organizations. We are 75 U.S. institutions and more than 750 faith groups working across the United States and around the globe. We address the structural causes of poverty and inequality in our communities and countries around the world.

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