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World Responds to Devastation of Hurricane Katrina

Messages of sympathy and offers of support are being sent to the United States after Hurricane Katrina devastated the U.S. Gulf coast.

In a statement Wednesday, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan said he is deeply saddened. He extended his condolences to the victims and their families.

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah called President Bush to offer condolences, while French President Jacques Chirac sent a letter of sympathy with the salutation, "Dear George."

Britain's Queen Elizabeth also sent a message expressing her sorrow, while the Vatican said Pope Benedict is praying for victims and rescue workers.

Venezuela's government offered to send fuel and a humanitarian aid task force. Russian President Vladimir Putin said his country is ready to provide necessary assistance.

A spokesman for Iran's foreign ministry offered his nation's condolences.

Meanwhile, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries offered support and reiterated its commitment to fill any oil production shortfall.

Some informaiton for this report provided by AP and AFP.