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Obama stresses enhanced preparedness six years after Katrina

(Xinhua)

08:04, August 30, 2011

WASHINGTON, Aug. 29 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama said on Monday that the government has made serious efforts to enhance preparedness for natural disasters since Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast in 2005, quoting its recent response to Hurricane Irene as an example.

Obama made the remarks in a statement on the sixth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, which was one of the deadliest hurricanes in the nation's history with at least 1,800 killed.

"When it comes to disaster response, we've worked very seriously to enhance our preparedness efforts so that Americans are ready before disaster strikes, and to strengthen our recovery capabilities so that we're more resilient after disaster strikes, " Obama said.

The anniversary comes as the U.S. was struck by another powerful storm over the weekend. Hurricane Irene churned up large areas of the east coast, killing at least 25 and leaving millions out of power.

While the worst of the storm has passed as Irene entered Canada Sunday night, many affected states are still facing the threat of flooding.

Obama pledged that the administration will respond "as quickly and effectively as possible, for as long as necessary, until the affected communities are back on their feet."


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