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Ban on deep-sea drilling rejected

European coastal nations have agreed to review rules for offshore drilling, but said each country should decide individually on how to improve safety on oil rigs to avoid disasters like the Gulf of Mexico spill.

A German proposal suggesting a suspension of some deep-water drilling operations - opposed by Britain, Norway and Denmark - was rejected at a meeting of 15 European nations and the European Union in Norway.

A compromise adopted at the two-day meeting in the west coast city of Bergen recommended countries review permits issued for "drilling activities in extreme conditions".

Environmental organisations including Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth said they were "deeply disappointed about the lack of concrete measures" at the gathering.

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