The White House has released a longer version of Barack Obama's US birth certificate to try to end a debate within Republican circles that he was not born in the United States.

The new document - a "long-form" birth certificate - confirms what a shorter version has said, that Obama was born in Hawaii on August 4, 1961, but provides a little more information, such as that he was born at Kapiolani Maternity and Gynecological Hospital.

He had also earlier released a standard short form, but requested copies of his original birth certificate from Hawaii officials this week in hopes of quieting the controversy.

White House officials have said the issue was settled long ago. But so-called birthers opposed to Obama have kept the issue alive.

Donald Trump, a potential Republican presidential candidate, recently began questioning why Obama had not ensured the long form was released.

Obama said on Wednesday that he was bemused over conspiracy theories over his birthplace, and said the media's interest in the "sideshow" issue was a distraction in a "serious time".

"We're not going to be able to solve our problems if we get distracted by sideshows and carnival barkers," he said.

Source: Agencies