Here’s what you need to know about Trump travel ban from Europe to US

As U.S. President Donald Trump has imposed on Wednesday a travel ban on 26 European countries after the World Health Organisation (WHO) named the coronavirus a global “pandemic”, here is what you need to know about the decision.

“To keep new cases from entering our shores, we will be suspending all travel from Europe to the United States,” Trump announced on Wednesday.

The virus, which emerged in China late 2019, has now infected more than 127,000 people worldwide, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. In Europe, countries including Italy, France, and Spain have been severely hit —these countries all have more than 2,000 cases. Italy, which has the highest number of coronavirus infections outside of China, has reported 12,462 confirmed cases of the flu-like virus, according to the latest figures from Johns Hopkins University and Italy’s Civil Protection agency.

More about the travel ban

The Trump decree is banning entry to those traveling from the 26 European countries that form the so-called Schengen Area, where there are no passport checks between internal borders.

These countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

According to the decree, most people who have been in these countries in the 14 days prior to their scheduled arrival in the United States are not allowed in. This two-week limit means those people affected can’t get around the rules by changing flights in a non-European airport.

On the other hand, the ban does not apply to legal permanent residents of the U.S., according to the Department of Homeland Security. And in most cases, it does not also apply to immediate family members of American citizens.

Countries in Europe not part of the Schengen area are excluded from the Trump ban. These countries are the U.K., Ireland, Croatia, Cyprus, Bulgaria, and Romania.

How long will Trump ban last?

The U.S. president said the ban would start at midnight Friday to last for 30 days.

However, Trump added that “these restrictions will be adjusted subject to conditions on the ground.”

Reasons behind travel ban

The United States had already imposed a travel ban on China in late January to try to control the coronavirus outbreak. The U.S. administration has attributed that early ban to the attempt to slow down the spread of the virus into the United States.

EU’s response to Trump ban

The European Union has firmly objected on Thursday the U.S. travel ban, saying that the EU “is taking strong action” against the pandemic.

“The European Union disapproves of the fact that the U.S. decision to impose a travel ban was taken unilaterally and without consultation,” European Council and European Commission Presidents Charles Michel and Ursula von der Leyen said in a joint statement.

“The Coronavirus is a global crisis, not limited to any continent and it requires cooperation rather than unilateral action.” they added.