The United States has allowed the volitional departure of families of its diplomats at missions in India “out of an abundance of caution” because of the extension of the “Do not travel” advisory for India in view of the Covid-19 pandemic, the state department reported.
On the insistence of spokesperson Ned Price, the authorized departure is voluntary and not mandatory.
Price during a press briefing said,
“As a precaution, the State Department has authorized the voluntary departure, so-called authorized departure, of family members from the Embassy–at the United States Embassy in New Delhi and at consulates across the country"
“An authorized departure does not force anyone to leave; he’s not forcing anyone to leave. This gives these family members the opportunity to leave if they wish. The departure, again, is not compulsory.
The United States also extended the Level 4 “Do not travel” advisory, which Price said was a “pro forma reissue” of a previously published advisory that “was in effect, given that Covid not only in India but in the world. Good”.
Two locally employed staff have died and more than 100 have tested positive.
Price turned down to share details of reports from U.S. Embassy staff suffering from Covid-19. CNN reported, citing sources, that there had been a major outbreak in US missions in India.