News Wrap: Doctors Without Borders appeals for access to rebel-held parts of Aleppo

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A boy walks past damaged buildings in the northern Syrian rebel-held town of al-Waqf, in Aleppo Governorate, Syria, October 9, 2016. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi - RTSRHI2

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HARI SREENIVASAN:  In the day’s other news:  The desperation of Aleppo, Syria, prompted Doctors Without Borders to appeal for access, amid a Russian-Syrian assault on the city.  The group supports eight hospitals there, but has only 35 doctors to help 275,000 civilians.  It says the wounded are sleeping outside, waiting for care.  Meanwhile, Russia announced it is creating a permanent naval base in Syria to increase its military presence in the region.

The wind and rain have subsided, but the damage that Hurricane Matthew did is far from over.  As of today, the storm is blamed for hundreds of deaths in Haiti, plus at least 22 more in the U.S.  Flooding extends across five states, with North Carolina hit the hardest.

Whole towns awash in water, the legacy of a long, stormy weekend across Eastern North Carolina.

ALISHA BROOKS, Fayetteville Resident:  I don’t have nothing left.  Nothing.  I have to take all this and put it in the garbage.  I just want somewhere else to go.

HARI SREENIVASAN:  It’s the worst the state has seen since Hurricane Floyd in 1999, and Governor Pat McCrory warned today, it will not end soon.

GOV. PAT MCCRORY (R-N.C.):  The greatest threat at this point in time remains inland flooding that will continue throughout this week in both Central and Eastern North Carolina.

HARI SREENIVASAN:  Matthew dumped a foot or more of rain more than 100 miles inland in Fayetteville, and eight inches in Raleigh, the state capital.

In Lumberton, just south of Fayetteville, rescuers worked to evacuate 1,500 people after a levee along the Lumber River broke overnight.  The deluge also triggered scores of rescue missions Saturday night and Sunday, with emergency crews from as far away as New York taking part.

WOMAN:  All us had to pitch together and help people get out of their apartments, get our stuff out, and crawl through water all night long, babies, all children all stuck in the water.

HARI SREENIVASAN:  Nearly a million homes and businesses in the Carolinas were still in the dark today, plus thousands more in Georgia and Virginia.  Parts of Interstate 95 were flooded in several places in North Carolina, halting traffic on a major north-south artery.

A number of roads and bridges remained closed in South Carolina as well, and 2,000 people were still in shelters.  Meanwhile, cleanup began elsewhere in Savannah, Georgia, where 17 inches of rain fell and in Florida, where Governor Rick Scott surveyed coastal erosion today.

GOV. RICK SCOTT (R-Fla.):  We were actually blessed that this storm never turned in and had a direct hit.  While we don’t want to see the devastation we have seen behind us at all, the most important thing is to save everybody’s life.

HARI SREENIVASAN:  The hurricane did score a direct hit on Haiti, destroying whole towns.  Estimates of the dead there range from 500 to 1,000, with a new outbreak of cholera compounding the crisis.

The United Nations called today for a massive response to get food, water and shelter to at least 750,000 Haitians.

We will look at what the hurricane did to the nation’s oldest city later in the program.

Samsung faced a new debacle today after reports that replacement Galaxy Note 7 phones are overheating and catching fire, just like the originals.  The company said it is temporarily adjusting production schedules.  It didn’t confirm reports that it halted production entirely.  Samsung recalled the original batch of 2.5 million Note 7s last month over the fire issue.

Two Boston area professors will share this year’s Nobel Prize for economics.  Oliver Hart of Harvard University and Bengt Holmstrom of Massachusetts Institute of Technology were honored today for their work in contract theory.  In Stockholm today, the Nobel Committee said they have shed light on everything from paying executives to privatizing prisons.

PER STROMBERG, Chair, The Economic Sciences Prize Committee:  Thanks to their research, we now have — can analyze not just financial terms, who should get paid what, but also the control and decision rights, ownership, property rights and other types of decision rights and contracts.

HARI SREENIVASAN:  Hart was born in Britain and has taught at Harvard since 1993.  Holmstrom is from Finland.

On Wall Street today, stocks rose as the price of oil topped $51 a barrel, the highest in a year.  The Dow Jones industrial average gained 88 points to close at 18329.  The Nasdaq rose 36 points, and the S&P 500 added nearly 10.

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