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News Wrap: Florence flooding plagues North Carolina

In our news wrap Tuesday, the confirmed death toll from Hurricane Florence climbed to 34, as huge swaths of North Carolina remained underwater. Also, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met South Korean President Moon Jae-in to begin their third summit.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    In the day's other news, the confirmed death toll from Hurricane Florence climbed to 35, most of them in Eastern North Carolina. And thousands of people in the region struggle for another day against catastrophic flooding.

    William Brangham has the latest.

  • William Brangham:

    The sunny skies over North Carolina make it appear the worst is over. But Florence's waters continue to plague the state. Huge swathes of the state are still underwater today; 1,200 roads remain closed. Interstate 40, a main east-west artery, looks more like a river.

    The town of Wilmington remains largely cut off. Officials there warned evacuees not to try and re enter the flooded city.

    FEMA Administrator Brock Long visited the state today and urged patience.

  • Brock Long:

    It's going to take some time for the water to recede. Some of these rivers still haven't crested yet, which is incredibly frustrating, not only to you wanting to go home, but it's incredibly frustrating to the responders and to our private sector partners who want to get in and fix the infrastructure.

  • William Brangham:

    The rainfall dropped by Florence is staggering. Elizabethtown, North Carolina, took nearly 36 inches in four days, roughly what Seattle, Washington, gets in a year.

    In Fayetteville, this was the Cape Fear River on Thursday. And here's that same bridge this morning.

  • Richard Lovick:

    This is history here. We have never seen it like this before. Never seen nothing like this before.

  • William Brangham:

    Three hundred thousand North Carolinians are still without power, and rescue missions continue. An estimated 10,000 evacuees are living in shelters.

    In the town of Trenton, this man piloted down Main Street in a boat to go check on his flooded home.

  • John Holmes:

    Looking out on all this, it's depressing. But only thing you can do is just take it day by day.

  • William Brangham:

    Governor Roy Cooper today tried to urge his constituents to hang on just a bit longer.

  • Gov. Roy Cooper, D-N.C.:

    I know, for many people, this feels like a nightmare that just won't end. I know many people are tired of the present and are scared of the future. But please know we will not give up on you.

  • William Brangham:

    It's hoped that, once the rivers crest today, Florence's floodwaters will finally start to recede.

    For the "PBS NewsHour," I'm William Brangham.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    The storm's remnants blew across the Northeast and New England today, touching all flash floods in New York state and New Hampshire.

    North Korean leader Kim Jong-un met with South Korea's President Moon Jae-in today to begin their third summit. Kim greeted Moon at the airport in the North's capital, Pyongyang, as crowds waved flags symbolizing Korean unification.

    Later, at a banquet, Moon talked of his objectives.

  • Moon Jae-in (through translator):

    We will candidly discuss ways to completely eradicate the military tension and threats of war. Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and establishment of peace are also important issues. We will take the first step to open a new era of permanent peace and cooperation.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Moon has also said he hopes to help talks between the U.S. and North Korea get back on track.

    In Libya, rival militias of resumed fighting in the capital, Tripoli, shattering a new cease-fire. The clashes damaged generators and caused massive power outages today across large parts of the country. Militias have fought over Tripoli since the dictator Moammar Gadhafi was overthrown and killed in 2011.

    Tensions between Russia and Israel ran high today, after a Russian military plane was shot down off Northern Syria. All 15 on board were killed. Syrian air defenses hit the Russian aircraft by mistake. They were firing at Israeli jets that attacked targets inside Syria's Latakia province. Russia's military initially blamed Israel, but later President Vladimir Putin took a more measured tone.

  • Vladimir Putin (through translator):

    It looks more like a chain of tragic accidental circumstances, because an Israeli plane didn't take down our plane. But, certainly, we have to seriously look into it. Referring to response actions, they will be targeted at ensuring additional safety of our military personnel and objects in Syrian Arabic Republic. These will be the steps that everyone will notice.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed sorrow, but said Syria bears the blame. He also said Israel will continue attacks against Iranian forces inside Syria and weapons headed for Iran's proxy, the Hezbollah militia.

    Back in this country, the U.S. Supreme Court today refused to block a lower court ruling that forced a conservative group to disclose its donors. The ruling requires that so-called dark money groups name all contributors who have given at least $200 in the past year. Such groups are playing a growing role in political campaigns, including the current midterms that will decide the balance of power in the Congress.

    The U.S. Interior Department has rolled back an Obama era rule that said energy companies must capture methane gas at drilling sites. It was aimed at curbing climate change, but had been tied up in court. Last week, the Environmental Protection Agency proposed weakening a similar rule on emissions from public and private lands.

    And on Wall Street, gains in tech, bank and energy stocks outweighed worries about a trade war with China. The Dow Jones industrial average gained almost 185 points to close near 26247. The Nasdaq rose 60 and the S&P 500 added 15.

    Still to come on the "NewsHour", implications of the sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh; the president announces tariffs on another $200 billion worth of goods imported from China; a Honduran man is deported without his daughter after entering the U.S. illegally; and much more.

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