Pentagon Suspends All Domestic Travel for U.S Troops Amid Coronavirus Outbreak
Troops will be allowed only 'authorized local leave' during the restrictions
Pentagon officials have announced it will halt on all domestic travel for military and civilian personnel for the next two months, just hours after President Donald Trump declared the coronavirus pandemic a national emergency.
A Department of Defense memo said:
“These restrictions are necessary to preserve force readiness, limit the continuing spread of the virus, and preserve the health and welfare of service members, DOD civilian employees, their families, and the local communities wherein which we live."
Troops will be allowed only “authorized local leave" during the restrictions which come into effect between March 16-May 11.
Among the exceptions include:
- Mission-essential travel
- Humanitarian reasons
- Extreme hardship
- Medical travel
The memo added that those already started traveling may continue to their final destination.
Troops pending retirement and separation are also exempt.
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“The Department will continue to issue additional guidance with regard to the COVID-19 as conditions warrant,” the DOD said.
“Our goal is to remain ahead of the virus spread, so our military force remains effective and ready.”
A leading health official, Anthony Fauci, said America is "ahead of the curve" on containing the coronavirus thanks to the bold actions of President Donald Trump.
Fauci, who has advised six presidents on HIV/AIDS and many other domestic and global health issues, praised Trump's handling of the crisis during a Friday interview.
The United States has a head start on containing the coronavirus because of President Trump's unprecedented travel restrictions, Dr. Fauci says.