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Covid-19: Biden vows independence from virus by Fourth of July

AP
Filed on March 12, 2021 | Last updated on March 12, 2021 at 09.38 pm
Reuters

He offered Americans fresh hope and appealed anew for their help.

One year after the nation was brought to a near-standstill by the coronavirus, President Joe Biden pledged in his first prime-time address on Thursday night to make all adults eligible for vaccines by May 1 and raised the possibility of beginning to "mark our independence from this virus" by the Fourth of July. He offered Americans fresh hope and appealed anew for their help.

Speaking in the White House East Room, Biden honoured the "collective suffering" of Americans over the past year in his 24-minute address and then offered them a vision for a return to a modicum of normalcy this summer.

"We are bound together by the loss and the pain of the days that have gone by," he said. "We are also bound together by the hope and the possibilities in the days in front of us."

He predicted Americans could safely gather at least in small groups for July Fourth to "make this Independence Day truly special."

But he also cautioned that this was a "goal" and attaining it depends on people's cooperation in following public health guidelines and rolling up their arms to get vaccinated as soon as eligible. Only that, he said, can bring about an end to a pandemic that has killed more than 530,000 Americans and disrupted the lives of countless more.





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