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Obama, Cameron try to cool down tensions over BP

07-21-2010 15:41 BJT

WASHINGTON, July 20 (Xinhua) -- By reaffirming the "truly special relationship" between the two allies, U.S. President Barack Obama and visiting British Prime Minister David Cameron on Tuesday waged a public campaign to appease recent tensions over the BP company, which was blamed for the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster and its alleged role in the release of the Lockerbie bomber last August.

U.S. President Barack Obama (R) and visiting British Prime Minister David Cameron attend a joint press conference after their meeting at the East Room of the White House in Washington D.C., capital of the United States, July 20, 2010.(Xinhua/Zhang Jun)
U.S. President Barack Obama (R) and visiting British Prime Minister David Cameron 
attend a joint press conference after their meeting at the East Room of the White 
House in Washington D.C., capital of the United States, July 20, 2010.(Xinhua/Zhang Jun)
"The United States and the United Kingdom enjoy a truly special relationship, ... the United States has no closer ally and no stronger partner than Great Britain," said Obama at a joint news conference with Cameron in the White House, adding that the two allies have been addressing common challenges ranging from terrorism to economic recovery, from non-proliferation to climate change.

Obama said that he and Cameron discussed the bilateral relations and common concerns, including sanctions on Iran, peace in the Middle East, and war in Afghanistan. Politely, Obama offered the prime minister an opportunity to comment on BP, at which Americans have poured massive anger over the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster and the alleged role in the release of the Lockerbie bomber.

Cameron, who is here not only for his first official visit as British prime minister, but for extinguishing the fierce fire against BP, said that he "absolutely" understood Americans' anger at BP following the oil disaster, which is believed to be the largest offshore spill in U.S. history resulting in a catastrophe for the environment, and for the fishing and tourism industry.

"We are clear here that BP should be blamed for what has happened in the Gulf, and have real responsibilities to cap the well, to clean up the spill, to pay compensation," said Cameron.

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