The ban goes into effect at 11:59 p.m. EST on May 28.

By Alison Fox
May 26, 2020
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President Donald Trump banned travel from Brazil over the weekend, restricting entry to any foreign nationals who spent time in Brazil 14 days before planning to come to the U.S., according to the White House.

The move comes as Brazil surpassed the UK and Russia to become the country with the second-highest number of confirmed cases of the virus, recording more than 374,800 cases and more than 23,400 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University. It also follows a similar restriction placed on travelers from Europe and China as COVID-19 continued to spread throughout the world.

The U.S. still leads the world as the country with the most confirmed cases with more than 1.6 million.

The latest travel ban, which will go into effect at 11:59 p.m. EST on May 28, includes several exceptions, including U.S. citizens or permanent residents and their spouses. It also does not apply to trade.

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany called the latest travel restriction a “decisive action to protect our country,” The Associated Press reported.

“Today’s action will help ensure foreign nationals who have been in Brazil do not become a source of additional infections in our country,” she said.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has downplayed the coronavirus, calling it a “little flu” and resisting the idea of a stay-at-home order, the AP noted.

“By temporarily banning the entry of Brazilians to the U.S., the American government is following previously established quantitative parameters that naturally reach a country as populous as ours,” Filipe Martins, who advises Bolsonaro on international affairs, tweeted. “There isn’t anything specifically against Brazil. Ignore the hysteria from the press.”

Trump has not moved to ban travel from Russia, the wire service noted. Russia currently has the third-highest number of confirmed cases in the world with just over 362,300.

While cases in Brazil continue to grow, COVID-19 has seen a decline in Europe and the European Union has started making plans to lift its own travel restrictions amid its borders.