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UPDATED: 10:49, September 16, 2005
Bush says Hurricane rescue "largely finished"
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The work of rescue in the Hurricane Katrina-hit area "is largely finished," and the work of recovery "is moving forward," US President George W. Bush said Thursday.

In a speech broadcast live from New Orleans, Louisiana, Bush said power has been restored in nearly all of Mississippi, and trade is starting to return to the Port of New Orleans.

Agricultural shipments are moving down the Mississippi River, all major gasoline pipelines are in operation, preventing the supply disruptions that many feared, he said.

In New Orleans, which was hit hard by the hurricane, the breaks in the levees have been closed, and the water is receding by the hour, said the president.

Bush said he has signed an order providing immediate assistance to people from the disaster area, and as of Thursday, more than 500,000 evacuee families have gotten emergency help to pay for food, clothing and other essentials.

Bush delivered the speech during the fourth visit to the area hit by Katrina on Aug. 29, leaving hundreds of people dead and nearly 1 million displaced, and causing billions of dollars in economic losses.

Source: Xinhua

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