The Biden administration has upgraded its travel advisory for India to an outright ban as the COVID-19 crisis in the country continues to spiral out of control — something President Biden once said would “not stop” coronavirus.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki announced the ban Friday afternoon, saying the decision was made on the advice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
“The administration will restrict travel from India starting immediately,” Psaki told reporters. “The policy will be implemented in light of extraordinarily high COVID-19 caseloads and multiple variants circulating in India.”
The policy will take effect on Tuesday, May 4.
President Biden has previously been critical of travel bans implemented by then-President Donald Trump as a tool to fight the spread of COVID-19, saying they “will not stop” the disease.
“Banning all travel from Europe — or any other part of the world — will not stop it,” Biden tweeted in March 2020 at the very start of the pandemic.
“A wall will not stop the coronavirus,” he wrote. “Banning all travel from Europe — or any other part of the world — will not stop it. This disease could impact every nation and any person on the planet — and we need a plan to combat it.”