President Donald Trump has said he will halt applications of foreign nationals seeking permanent residence in the US because of the coronavirus crisis.
On Tuesday alone, the Covid-19 count in the U.S. rose by more than 2,750 deaths to carry over 45,000 deaths in total-by far the world’s largest. Worldwide, at least 2,553,853 became contaminated and have died over citizens since the epidemic started. The US also tops the highest number of reported cases of coronavirus with over-cases, nearly four times as many as Spain (200,210), the second-highest number nation. Italy (181,228), France (156,480) and Germany (147,065) went on.
Late on Tuesday, the World Health Organisation reported that all existing data suggested that the novel coronavirus emerged in animals in China late last year and was not engineered or produced in a laboratory.
Trump said he would be placing a 60-day pause on the issuance of green cards in an effort to limit competition for jobs in a US economy wrecked by the coronavirus. The order would include “certain exemptions,” he said, but he declined to outline them, noting the order was still being crafted.
What did President Trump say?
More than 20 million Americans have lost their jobs amid the coronavirus outbreak, and the president said the government had a “solemn duty” to ensure they regain their jobs.
“It would be wrong and unjust for Americans laid off by the virus to be replaced with new immigrant labour flown in from abroad,” he said, adding that there could be some exemptions to the measure.
The US has the highest number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the world – more than 820,000 – according to Johns Hopkins University, which is tracking the disease globally.
- They give immigrants legal permanent residence and the opportunity to apply for American citizenship
- In a typical year, nearly one million green cards are issued in the US
- The majority – roughly 70% – go to those with relatives living in the US, according to a 2018 report from the US Senate
- For employment-based green cards, a common form of the residency status, roughly 80% are issued to those already in the country, shifting from a temporary visa to permanent residence