Restrictions on nonessential land traffic along the border between Mexico and the United States will be extended until Sept. 21 due to the novel coronavirus (covid-19) pandemic, the Mexican Foreign Relations Secretariat (SRE) announced on Friday, Aug. 14.

According to the secretariat, Mexico proposed the extension of the partial closure of the border for another month after reviewing the development of the pandemic in both countries.

The measure, implemented on March 21 along the common border, restricts travel for tourism or recreational purposes, but permits commercial, medical and essential work-related travel.

“Both countries will try to coordinate health measures in the border region that will be in effect until 11:59 p.m. local time on Sept. 21, 2020,” SRE said via Twitter.

Mexican Foreign Relations Secretary Marcelo Ebrard announced on Thursday,Aug. 13, that Mexico had asked the United States to extend the measure as the pandemic was re-emerging in U.S. states bordering Mexico.

“Right now, they have a resurgence (of the disease) in the south, so the border cannot be opened right now, and in some (Mexican) states, we are more or less going down,” Ebrard explained.

This announcement came only minutes after U.S. President Donald Trump said in a televised news conference that he intended to extend the partial border closure with Mexico due to the high incidence of covid-19 cases.

Under normal circumstances, thousands of people cross the common border every day for work, school and tourism purposes.

By Sept. 21, the border will have been partially closed for six months.

The United States is the country that has been the most heavily affected by the pandemic, with over 5 million cases and over 160,000 deaths, while Mexico has registered more than 500,000 cases and over 55,000 deaths, although the figure is believed to be highly underreported.

Canada has also extended its closure to nonessential travelers from both the United States and Canada for at least one more month.

…Aug. 15, 2020


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