March 10, 2020
Michelle O’Neill suspends US travel plans due to Coronavirus response planning

Sinn Féin vice-president Michelle O’Neill has suspended travel plans to Washington DC tomorrow.

She was due to travel with Arlene Foster as Joint Heads of Government to the White House St Patrick’s reception and other events from Wednesday until Friday.

Michelle O’Neill said:

“We remain in containment stage, however as leaders of the Executive we have decided to suspend our travel to the United States this week since our full attention is on civil contingency planning around the Coronavirus outbreak and protecting public health.

“We are fully engaged in the COBRA meetings alongside England, Scotland and Wales in assessing the response to the outbreak on advice from our chief medical officer. 

“There is all-Ireland co-ordination between health and medical professionals on a daily basis also. I am in regular contact with Tanáiste Simon Coveney and Health Ministers North and South are also working closely. 

“It is regrettable that we must suspend our travel to the US to meet with political leaders and potential investors, but it is necessary. 

“We were going to deliver the message that the North is open for business and is a great place to invest.

“We look forward to working with the new Special Envoy Mick Mulvaney and his colleague, Consul General Elizabeth Kennedy Trudeau, to build on our strong economic links as we work to protect our interests after Brexit.” 

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