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Obama unveils Gulf of Mexico oil spill response

US President Barack Obama has defended his government’s handling of the huge oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

He unveiled a series of measures, including a continued moratorium on drilling permits for six months.

The move comes after an opinion poll said 60% of Americans were unhappy with the government’s response.

Meanwhile, BP said its “top kill” effort was making progress in stemming the oil flow, from what some experts say is the country’s worst-ever spill.

Speaking at the White House, President Obama vowed to hold BP accountable for the “horrific disaster” and said his officials would do everything necessary to protect and restore the coast.

His comments came as more questions were asked about whether the president had been sufficiently engaged in handling the disaster, says the BBC’s Adam Brookes in Washington.

Mr Obama called the spill an “unprecedented disaster”, and blasted the “scandalously close relationship” between oil companies and regulators.

Earlier, his administration announced the resignation of the head of the Minerals Management Service (MMS), which oversees drilling operations.

Mr Obama said the MMS had been plagued by corruption for years.


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