White House sources confirmed to Reuters on Wednesday, August 6, that a plan aims to require incoming travelers to be vaccinated with the Corona virus in order to be eligible to enter the United States.
The plan is currently in the early stages of development and, according to the same source, will include “a phased approach meaning that over time, with limited exceptions, foreign nationals traveling to the United States (from all countries) need to be fully vaccinated.”
While imposing such a requirement means that more people will not be able to travel to the US from countries like Canada and Australia, for residents of the Schengen area countries and the UK, it means that travel to the US will eventually be possible for the majority with them.
Such statements come at a time when the US is facing a lot of criticism over the entry ban for travelers from the Schengen area, the UK and Ireland, which has been in place since the end of winter last year.
Just this week, TheSchengen.com reported that EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is among those who have criticized the entry ban for travelers from the European Union, noting that the EU and the US are both in the same COVID-19 case.
Earlier, sources inside the White House confirmed that the US authorities do not plan to lift the ban on entry to Schengen countries due to concerns raised about the spread of the delta variant in Europe.
However, the idea of imposing a vaccination requirement on incoming travelers was not welcomed by everyone.
The Travel Association of America responded to the news, calling the plan a “step backwards” if it became a reality. For months, the same association has consistently called for the borders to be reopened to countries around the world.
“While vaccinations are an important tool to allow us to reopen the doors of 212 (and) countries, it would be a step backwards to replace current testing requirements with vaccine requirements for all other countries,” the union’s vice president of public affairs and policy Tory Emerson Barnes said in regard to with the news.
The association urged the government to set a reopening date as soon as possible, as other countries of the world are also moving towards reopening their borders, citing as an example the European Union member states and Canada.
Data released by the World Health Organization shows that the United States has so far reported a total of 3,5125,227 cases of the COVID-19 virus since the start of the pandemic, of which 114,820 were in the past 24 hours.
On the other hand, as of August 5, 34,919,952 cases have been reported in the EU/EEA by the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control.