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White House postpones Spain's state visit due to coronavirus

Coronavirus study projects grim picture

Washington — The White House has postponed a state visit by King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain as the federal government continues to address the coronavirus pandemic, with the number of reported cases worldwide topping 200,000.

President Trump and first lady Melania Trump were set to host the monarchs for a state visit and dinner on April 21.

The event was postponed "in order for the United States and Spain to continue to devote their full resources and attention to the COVID-19 response," White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.

"The United States will continue to work with Spain and all our European partners to minimize the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic," Grisham said.

The state visit would have been the third of the Trump presidency. Spain's king and queen also visited the White House in June 2018.

The coronavirus pandemic has effectively brought daily life in Europe and the United States to a halt. Spain implemented a lockdown last week, restricting people from leaving their home only for essential activities. In the U.S., many major cities have ordered restaurants, theaters, bars and schools to close as public health officials work to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

The number of cases worldwide surpassed 200,000 and more than 8,000 people have died from the illness, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Mr. Trump imposed travel restrictions on foreign nationals entering the U.S. from Europe earlier this month.

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