President Barack Obama said Thursday that harmful levels of radiation are not expected to reach the United States, “whether it’s the West Coast, Hawaii, Alaska, or U.S. territories in the Pacific.”

“Let me repeat that,” the president said. “We do not expect harmful levels of radiation to reach the West Coast, Hawaii, Alaska, or U.S. territories in the Pacific. That is the judgment of our Nuclear Regulatory Commission and many other experts.”

According to a press release from the White House, Obama continued: “Furthermore, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and public health experts do not recommend that people in the United States take precautionary measures beyond staying informed. And going forward, we will continue to keep the American people fully updated — because I believe that you must know what I know as President.”

The president’s remarks were made in the White House Rose Garden at 9:35 a.m. HST.

Obama said the U.S. was closely monitoring the nuclear reactor catastrophe in Japan that was caused by last week’s 9.0-magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami, and reiterated the reasons for evacuating American citizens within 50 miles of the Fukushima Daiichi plant.

“Beyond this 50-mile radius, the risks do not currently call for an evacuation,” the president said. “But we do have a responsibility to take prudent and precautionary measures to educate those Americans who may be endangered by exposure to radiation if the situation deteriorates.”

Obama said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and public health experts “do not recommend that people in the United States take precautionary measures beyond staying informed.”

The president has asked the NRC to do a comprehensive review of the safety of domestic nuclear plants “in light of the natural disaster that unfolded in Japan.”

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