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US snubs Canada offer, extends travel restrictions

  • Travel restrictions extended with Mexico for another one month

The U.S. has snubbed Canada’s offer to open its borders to visitors from America, extending travel restrictions at the borders with Canada and Mexico for another month.

In two notices posted Wednesday, the Biden administration said it will limit entrance into the U.S. to those making “essential travel” through Aug. 21.

The determinations come just two days after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Canada would begin allowing vaccinated Americans to enter the country so long as they can provide proof they’ve received a complete round of approved vaccinations.

Canada will welcome visitors from other countries in September.

“As we made decisions around reopening to the world in early September, and to American travelers, a few weeks before that, we kept the American government fully apprised,” Trudeau said this week. “We will continue to work with them, but understand and respect that every country makes its own decisions about what it does at its borders.”

The decision to extend travel restrictions with Mexico comes as the Biden administration is also weighing whether to scrap Title 42 — a Trump-era regulation that allows border agents to swiftly expel anyone who crosses into the U.S., regardless of whether they may have asylum claims.

The administration has said it would base its decision on lifting Title 42 on health determinations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

But Wednesday’s order indicates the administration is still concerned about how foreign travel could impact U.S. health conditions amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The notice signed by Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said travel with Mexico, like Canada, poses a “specific threat to human life or national interests.”

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