US President Donald Trump issued Friday evening a memorandum threatening to impose visa sanctions on countries that “deny or unreasonably delay” to repatriate their citizens from the US amid the coronavirus outbreak.
“Countries that deny or unreasonably delay the acceptance of their citizens, subjects, nationals, or residents from the United States during the ongoing pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 create unacceptable public health risks for Americans,” Trump wrote in the memorandum.
He added that the US “must be able to effectuate the repatriation of foreign nationals who violate the laws of the United States”. He noted that the Secretary of Homeland Security “Shall notify the Secretary of State… if any government of a foreign country denies or unreasonably delays the acceptance of aliens who are citizens, subjects, nationals, or residents of that country after being asked to accept those aliens, and if such denial or delay is impeding operations of the Department of Homeland Security necessary to respond to the ongoing pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2.”
“The Secretary of State shall as expeditiously as possible, but no later than 7 days after receipt (of a notification) adopt and initiate a plan to impose the visa sanctions,” he continued. Sanctions imposed “Shall cease to apply if the Secretary of Homeland Security notifies the Secretary of State that a foreign country has resumed accepting aliens without unreasonable delay who are its citizens, subjects, nationals, or residents when asked to accept those aliens.”
He concluded that this memorandum “Shall cease to apply on December 31, 2020, unless extended.”