White House dismisses report that US wants border with Canada reopened next month –

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White House dismisses report that US wants border with Canada reopened next month – fr


WASHINGTON – The United States has made no decision on when or how to reopen the border with Canada, the White House said on Thursday in response to reports suggesting that American patience with the closure has followed its Classes.

Press secretary Jen Psaki said she was unaware decisions had been made regarding the border beyond last week’s announcement that the restrictions, which have been in place since March 2020, will be extended. until June 21.

A news article published Wednesday in Point Roberts, Washington, a border community hard hit by the restrictions, cited unnamed U.S. Customs and Border Protection sources as saying the shutdown will end on June 22.

“It’s just been extended for about a month, I think, so it’s around that timeline,” Psaki said during a press briefing.

“I don’t think a decision was made, to my knowledge, on what would happen after that. “

Officials in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s office have not explicitly confirmed or denied the report, instead highlighting his insistence that 75 percent of Canadians should be vaccinated before the restrictions can be lifted.

“Conversations continue constantly with the US administration as there is a great rush to get back to normal on all sides,” Trudeau said Thursday.

Step 1, he said, is to reduce the outbreak to a stage where minor outbreaks can be effectively managed and quelled without the risk of spreading more widely. Step 2 would be this vaccination threshold.

“Raising the number of vaccines above 75 percent across the country will allow for a much better posture when reopening, including around what we do with the US border and international borders. “

Thanks in large part to the fact that COVID-19 was so prevalent in the United States throughout 2020, Canadians have been much less eager to ease border restrictions than their American counterparts, according to polls.

But the robust vaccine rollout has made some U.S. lawmakers impatient.

Canada now surpasses the United States in terms of people who received at least one dose – 53.5% and 49.3%, at last count – while about 40% of Americans are fully vaccinated, up from less than 5 % of Canadians.

“I think it’s time for us to come up with a plan,” Vermont Gov. Phil Scott said Thursday at a roundtable hosted by the Quebec Employers Council, the largest employer group. of the province.

Scott said the United States could do more to help Canadians acquire second doses of the vaccine and expressed support for requiring travelers to show some sort of proof of vaccination in order to cross the border.

“There has to be a way to do it, and I think maybe some sort of passport (vaccine), at least during the transition, could be helpful. “

New York Representative Brian Higgins, one of the strongest American voices to date on reopening the border, urged both sides to come up with a plan – including allowing Canadians to travel to the United States to get a second dose.

Higgins wrote to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo last week asking him to allow Canadians to take advantage of unfulfilled immunization appointments in the state to speed up the lifting of border restrictions.

“If there is an excess of vaccine, we should do everything in our power to ensure that these doses are not wasted,” Higgins wrote.

“The stakes of this pandemic are too high to do less. “

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on May 27, 2021.

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