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Puerto Ricans ask for US statehood

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By Euronews
Puerto Ricans ask for US statehood

<p>People in the US territory of Puerto Rico have overwhelmingly backed a referendum to become the 51st state of the US.</p> <p>However, only 23 percent of eligible voters turned out to cast a ballot and the bid would struggle to get support in Congress. </p> <p>One resident who voted for statehood, Jose Alvarez, told reporters: “Statehood will solve some problems but we as a nation have to assume responsibility and make decisions, be more hands on.”</p> <p>College student Amalia Diaz said: “Statehood would make for a better future for Puerto Rican families. Students leave after they graduate because there aren’t opportunities.”</p> <p>Some 97 percent of those who voted backed statehood, but the referendum was boycotted by the two main opposition parties.</p> <p>There were three options put to voters: become a US state, remain a territory or become independent.</p> <p>This is the fifth time since 1967 that this economically-struggling island has held a referendum on the issue.</p>