White House considers ban on China flights amid coronavirus outbreak

White House considers ban on China flights amid coronavirus outbreak

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The White House is considering a ban on flights between the United States and China as the new coronavirus outbreak continues to spread, Trump administration officials said late Tuesday.

The administration has discussed the prospect of suspending flights to China, but has not made a decision, officials said, denying some media reports that it had.

A White House official, requesting anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter, said talks are ongoing.

“The White House did not call the airlines and hasn’t asked for a suspension of flights between the U.S. and China,” the official said.

So far, 106 people have died from the new coronavirus and the number of confirmed cases in China has ballooned to more than 4,500.

The epicenter of the outbreak is Wuhan, a city of 11 million people, but during their Tuesday press conference, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and U.S. Department of Department of Health and Human Services officials said there were 60 cases in 13 other countries outside of China, including five in the U.S.

So far, 106 people have died from the new coronavirus and the number of confirmed cases in China has ballooned to more than 4,500.

The discussion of a possible ban on China flights comes on the heels of an announcement that the CDC and U.S. State Department have expanded their travel advisories to cover all of China.

The CDC issued a level 3 travel warning Monday, its highest level, recommending travelers avoid all nonessential travel to China. Previously only Wuhan was at level 3. The rest of China was rated level 2, which recommends travelers “practice enhanced precautions.”

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