By Tony Winterburn •
Published: 14 Mar 2020 • 8:43
U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency over the fast-spreading coronavirus to free up $50 billion in federal aid and said he would “most likely” be tested for the virus himself soon after facing possible exposure.
“I’m officially declaring a national emergency,” he said. “Two very big words.”
He said this will “unleash the full power of the federal government. We will defeat this threat,” Mr Trump said.
“When America is tested America rises to the occasion.”
It comes after 41 people diagnosed with the virus in the United States have died.
The US president also urged every state to set up emergency centres to help fight the virus.
Amid the announcement, he also said the UK could be added to the list of European countries included in the US travel ban.
He told reporters during a White House press conference on Friday that the UK exemption had been made after being “recommended to me by a group of professionals”.
However, he said the UK’s rising number of cases could result in a re-think of that decision.
Trump said: “We are looking at it based on the new numbers that are coming out and we may have to include them in the list of countries that we will, you could say ban or whatever it is, during this period of time, but yeah their numbers have gone up fairly precipitously over the last 24 hours so we may be adding that and we maybe adding a couple of others and we may frankly start thinking about taking some off.”
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