Obama declares major disaster for American Samoa

September 30, 2009 7:17:14 AM PDT
President Barack Obama has declared a major disaster for American Samoa, a day after an earthquake sent a massive tsunami toward Samoa and American Samoa, leaving at least 99 dead and dozens missing. Obama said the Federal Emergency Management Agency is in contact with emergency responders, and the U.S. Coast Guard is helping deliver resources to areas in need of assistance.

The disaster declaration allows the United States to provide the support necessary for a "full, swift and aggressive response," the president said.

In a statement issued early Wednesday, Obama said he and his wife, Michelle, "will keep those who have lost so much in our thoughts and prayers."

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