US President Joe Biden announced his national "wartime" plan to raise the fight against the raging COVID-19 pandemic, including making the coronavirus test compulsory for all travelers coming from abroad, followed by quarantine.
In announcing the steps, Mr. Biden said it would take months to defeat the pandemic, but if individuals stood together, America would "get through this."
The moves come a day after the 46th President was sworn in by Mr. Biden.
"Biden said at a White House event where he signed the orders, "In addition to wearing masks, anyone flying to the United States from another country will need to search before they get on the plane, before they leave, and quarantine when they arrive in America.
In terms of total deaths from coronavirus, the U.S. is the worst-hit country with more than 406,000 lives lost, according to Johns Hopkins University. Nearly 24.5 million have been infected in the country.
U.S. airlines and their employees have been seeking such a federal mask mandate almost since the pandemic began, as they have struggled to deal with score of passengers who refuse to follow the airlines’ own mask-wearing rules.
But the previous Trump administration had refused to enact such a mask mandate, as the ex-president himself and many in his administration often made a point of going mask-less.