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By Ricardo Álvarez-Díaz
Two years ago last month, Hurricane Maria ravaged Puerto Rico, ultimately taking more than 3,000 lives. It also exposed the structural vulnerabilities of existing buildings, and further exacerbated the already painful impact of a more than decade-long recession.
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The US territory of Puerto Rico has voted to ask Congress to make it America's 51st state.
More than 97% of voters favoured attempting to join the US over becoming independent or remaining a self-governing territory.
However, just 23...