U.S. and Mexico Close Border to All Non-Essential Travel
Date: 2020-03-20 16:43:11
President Donald Trump said “non-essential” travel will be suspended across the U.S. border with Mexico, adding to restrictions already set to go in place on the Canadian border as the three countries combat the coronavirus outbreak. #Coronavirus #Covid19 #USMexico
“These new rules and procedures will not impede lawful trade and commerce,” Trump said at a White House news conference on Friday. “Furthermore, Mexico is taking action to secure our own southern border and suspend air travel from Europe.”
He also said that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will help border authorities “prevent the transmission of the virus coming through both the northern and the southern borders. So we’re treating the borders equally.”
Trump and Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador will speak Friday by phone about restricting travel across their shared border,according to people familiar with the matter. The people asked not to be identified because the call hasn’t been announced.
Acting U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf told reporters at the White House on Friday that the U.S. is working with both Canada and Mexico to restrict tourism and recreational travel across the borders.
“We’re working with our Canadian partners as well as our Mexican partners to put some restrictions on the travel across that border, really looking at limiting non-essential travel across that border,” Wolf said. “We want to make sure that cargo continues, trade continues, health-care workers continue to be able to traverse that border. But tourism, some recreational activities and other things need to stop during this crisis.”
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Thursday he spoke with Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, and that the two are trying to “balance protecting our citizens from further transmission” while aiming to “prioritize essential cross-border commerce and trade.” Ebrard confirmed they had spoken, and said the U.S.-Mexico border should remain open to trade and work.
Trump and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have already announced the Canada measure, though it hasn’t yet been settled or detailed. It’s due to take effect later Friday.
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