Biden To Scuttle Trump Order To Lift Air Travel Restrictions From Europe, Brazil

In one of his last actions as U.S. President, Donald Trump issued an executive order lifting travel restrictions for much of Europe and Brazil imposed to restrict coronavirus-infection from abroad.

Trump ordered that restrictions on incoming travelers to the United States from the 26 European countries in the Schengen Zone, the UK, and Ireland, imposed in March 2020, will become ineffective on January 26.

Travel restrictions on passengers from Iran and China will continue.

“Unrestricted entry into the United States of persons who have been physically present in the Schengen Area, the United Kingdom (excluding overseas territories outside of Europe), the Republic of Ireland, and the Federative Republic of Brazil is no longer detrimental to the interests of the United States and find that it is in the interest of the United States to terminate the suspension of entry into the United States of persons who have been physically present in those jurisdictions,” Trump said in the order.

“I agree with the Secretary (of Health and Human Services Alex Azar) that this action is the best way to continue protecting Americans from COVID-19 while enabling travel to resume safely,” the order says.

But the incoming president’s press secretary, Jen Psaki, immediately responded by making it clear that the Biden administration will stop the move. “On the advice of our medical team, the administration does not intend to lift these restrictions on 1/26. In fact, we plan to strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of Covid-19,” she said on Twitter.

“With the pandemic worsening, and more contagious variants emerging around the world, this is not the time to be lifting restrictions on international travel,” according to her.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that from January 26, all travelers who fly in to the United States will be required to show a negative coronavirus test within three days before their U.S.-bound flight.

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