The U.S. government’s response to the novel coronavirus COVID-19 took on new urgency on Wednesday night as President Donald Trump ordered a 30-day halt of travel from Europe. The move comes after the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a global pandemic earlier in the day.
The president made the announcement Wednesday evening during a primetime televised address to the nation from the Oval Office. He said that he was acting in an attempt to reduce the number of cases of coronavirus coming into the country from abroad.
“We are marshaling the full power of the federal government and the private sector,” Trump said. “We will ultimately and expeditiously defeat this virus.”
Trump said that all travel from Europe would be suspended for 30 days beginning on Friday, March 13. The order does not apply to permanent residents of the United States or to travel from the U.K. After Wednesday’s address, the White House clarified that the travel suspension would only apply to people and not goods or cargo.
Although Trump said that the coronavirus is a “horrible infection” and health experts say that the crisis is worsening, the president also indicated that he still believes that the outbreak will