Amid the growing spread globally of the Coronavirus, the State Department on Thursday issued a dire warning to U.S. citizens, telling them to cease all international travel and return home as soon as possible, or face the chance that they would have to remain overseas for an extended period.
"In countries where commercial departure options remain available, U.S. citizens who live in the United States should arrange for immediate return to the United States, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period," the State Department said in an unusual "Level 4" travel warning.
"U.S. citizens who live abroad should avoid all international travel," the State Department recommended.
Some Americans who are overseas are already having a difficult time returning to the United States because of canceled flights.
On Thursday, President Donald Trump said the military was trying to help some who had marooned in South America, as the State Department flatly sent the message that if Americans don't return now - they may be out of luck for some time.
“If you choose to travel internationally, your travel plans may be severely disrupted, and you may be forced to remain outside of the United States for an indefinite timeframe,” the travel warning stated.
U.S. airlines have already started to drastically cut back on their international service, scrambling travel plans for thousands.
For example, American Airlines already announced it would reduce international service by 75 percent.
Thank you for reading the Springfield News-Sun and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Springfield News-Sun. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.