US President Donald Trump takes U-turn over his decision to lockdown New York following immense criticism. Trump now says he would issue a travel warning for the hard-hit region to limit the spread of COVID-19 any further.
Trump backed off from an earlier suggestion that he might try to cut off New York entirely at a time when the total death toll in the United States surpassed 2,100, more than double the level from two days ago.
On SaturdayTrump said that he might impose a ban on travel in and out of New York and parts of New Jersey and Connecticut — the US epicenter of the disease — to protect other states that have yet to bear the brunt. He offered few specifics.
Critics promptly called the idea unworkable, saying it would cause chaos in a region that serves as the economic engine of the eastern United States, accounting for 10 percent of the population and 12 percent of GDP.
"If you started walling off areas all across the country it would be totally bizarre, counter-productive, anti-American,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on CNN.
Hours later, Trump dropped the idea, saying he would instead ask the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to issue a “strong Travel Advisory” that would be administered by the three states’ governors.
"I have asked the @CDCgov to issue a strong Travel Advisory, to be administered by the Governors, in consultation with the federal government,” he said on Twitter.
The US has now recorded more than 122,000 cases of the respiratory virus — the most in any country in the world.