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BP will “absolutely be paying for the cleanup operation” of the huge oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, chief executive Tony Hayward said Monday. “There’s no doubt about that.”

“It is indeed BP’s responsibility to deal with this and we’re dealing with it,” Hayward told NPR’s “Morning Edition.”

And, he added, “where legitimate claims [of damages] are made, we will be good for them,” according to NPR’s website.

The ruptured undersea well off Louisiana is spewing about 210,000 gallons (5,000 barrels) of crude a day into the Gulf of Mexico. And efforts to corral the rapidly growing oil spill have so far been unsuccessful.

The slick was still nine miles off the Louisiana coast early Monday, but seas of six to 10 feet have made deploying booms to keep the spill off the coast “somewhat problematic,” Adm. Thad Allen, the commandant of the Coast Guard, has said.

Fishing has been banned by federal officials for at least the next 10 days in a portion of the northern Gulf of Mexico that includes the mouth of the Mississippi River in Louisiana. The Gulf Coast’s commercial fishing industry brings in about $2.4 billion a year to the region.

Officials are fighting the spill on three fronts, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Monday.

“One is to cap the well” that is leaking the oil, she said. “Efforts to do that have not succeeded to date.”

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