President Trump on Monday night lifted coronavirus-related travel restrictions that cover much of Europe and Brazil but still bars China and Iran, beginning Jan. 26, nearly a week after he leaves office.
But President-elect Joseph R. Biden, who takes the oath of office on Wednesday, said through a spokeswoman that he will reverse the order and keep the travel restrictions in place.
“With the pandemic worsening, and more contagious variants emerging around the world, this is not the time to be lifting restrictions on international travel,” said incoming Biden White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Twitter. “On the advice of our medical team, the [Biden] 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.”
It’s not clear whether Mr. Biden, who will take the oath of office on Wednesday, would reverse Mr. Trump‘s order.
In Mr. Trump‘s executive order, he said his administration has “high confidence” that Europe and Brazil will cooperate with the United States in implementing safeguards against spreading the virus.
But he said China and Iran “repeatedly have failed to cooperate with the United States public health authorities and to share timely, accurate information about the spread of the virus.”
“Those jurisdictions’ responses to the pandemic, their lack of transparency, and their lack of cooperation with the United States thus far in combatting the pandemic, cast doubt on their cooperation,” Mr. Trump said.