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Obama says U.S. gov't working to restore New Orleans five years after Katrina

WASHINGTON, Aug. 30 — U.S. President Barack Obama said Sunday in New Orleans his administration is working to restore the city, five years after the devastating Hurricane Katrina made landfall in Louisiana, and will fight "until the job is done."

In a speech delivered at Xavier University to mark the hurricane that left over 1,800 people dead and billions of dollars of damage, Obama said the administration is working "to make sure that the federal government was a partner — instead of an obstacle — to the recovery of the Gulf Coast."

He said the federal government is working to rebuild the region, tackle corruption and inefficiency, help New Orleans recruit doctors and nurses, as well as help schools and combat crimes.

"Today, New Orleans is one of the fastest growing cities in America, with a big surge in new small businesses," he said.

Obama also said the administration is focusing on preparing for future natural disasters, as the largest civil works project in American history is underway to build a fortified levee system.

He also talked about the efforts to combat the BP Gulf oil spill. "We are going to stand with you until the oil is cleaned up, the environment is restored, polluters are held accountable, communities are made whole, and this region is back on its feet," Obama said.

New Orleans is the epicenter of the damages caused by Katrina. The city is Obama's first stop as he concludes a summer holiday at Martha's Vineyard, Ma. (PNA/Xinhua) V3/ALM

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