On Wednesday, a White House official said the administration was looking to reopen in a "safe and sustainable manner"; adding that foreign nationals travelling to the United States from all countries "need to be fully vaccinated".

The unnamed official told several news agencies that the Biden administration had tasked inter-agency groups with creating a phased reopening for international visitors. No timeline for the decision was given.

The US has seen a rise in cases, particularly among the unvaccinated, amid the spread of the Delta variant.

Current Covid-19 rules prevent many international travellers from entering the country. Those who are able to enter the country must show proof of a negative COVID test taken within 3 days of travel.

Last week, White House Press Secretary, Jen Psaki, said that the US would "maintain existing travel restrictions at this point" due to rising infections, despite opposition from airlines and the tourism industry.

“Given where we are today with the Delta variant, the United States will maintain existing travel restrictions at this point...Driven by the Delta variant, cases are rising here at home, particularly among those who are unvaccinated and appear likely continue to increase in the weeks ahead.”

The United States currently bars most non-US citizens who, within the last 14 days, have been in the 26 Schengen nations in Europe, UK, Ireland, China, India, South Africa, Iran and Brazil.

Source: BBC World News