Canada, U.S. appear likely to extend travel restrictions until June 21: Canadian sources

FILE PHOTO: Ashley Van Dorp of Abbotsford shows her mother, Susan Halewood of Blaine, Washington, her Mother’s Day gift as the family gathered for Mother’s Day along the Canada-U.S. border, closed to non-essential travel due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) restrictions in Langley, British Columbia, Canada May 10, 2020. REUTERS/Jennifer Gauthier/File Photo

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada and the United States appear likely to extend a ban on non-essential travel until June 21 amid the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic, two Canadian government sources said on Wednesday.

Canada and the United States had agreed on April 18 to extend border restrictions until May 21 as cases of the disease continue to rise in both nations. Canada is now pressing for the measures to stay in place for another month.

“It’s too early to lift the restrictions, so we’re working toward an extension,” said one Canadian source, describing the talks with Washington as positive. A second source said the discussions had been collaborative.

The sources requested anonymity given the sensitivity of the situation. News of the Canadian request for a 30-say extension was first reported by the Globe and Mail newspaper.

Representatives for the State Department could not be immediately reached for comment on the report.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Canada was “looking at stronger measures” to ensure the virus was not being spread by people crossing the long border with the United States, but gave no details.

Reporting by David Ljunggren in Ottawa, Bhargav Acharya in Bengaluru and Susan Heavey in Washington; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Bernadette Baum