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US President Trump meets victims of the deadly tornado which struck last week

US President Trump meets victims of the deadly tornado which struck last week
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US President Donald Trump has visited areas of Eastern Alabama devastated by a powerful tornado.

More than 20 people were killed by the deadly twister which struck on Sunday 3 March.

When he arrived in Beauregard, the worst hit area, with first lady Melania Trump, he met officials but also spoke to families who lost their homes.

Reporters asked him what he had seen from the helicopter in which he arrived.

"Well, I saw this," he said. "It's hard to believe actually and I guess the fact that we went pretty early helped, helped a lot of people but we saw things that you wouldn't believe. Here it is. We saw the same thing."

On Tuesday the resulting damage was declared a disaster and the president ordered federal aid to be used in the area in addition to local efforts.

Trump instructed the Federal Emergency Management Agency to give Alabama the so-called "A Plus treatment".

The Providence Baptist Church distributed clothes, toiletries and Bibles as it became a disaster relief centre.

The president and first lady later observed a moment of silence in front of white wooden crosses commemorating each of the victims.

The tornado that hit Beauregard was the deadliest in the US since May 2013, when 24 people were killed in Moore, Oklahoma.