09:29 GMT04 April 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The US military has halted troop movement for 60 days to contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) but it will not affect the withdrawal of forces from Afghanistan, the Defence Department said in a statement.

    "Today, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper enacted a 60-day stop movement order for all DoD uniformed and civilian personnel and their sponsored family members overseas. This measure is taken to aid in further prevention of the spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), to protect US personnel and preserve the operational readiness of our global force," the release said on Wednesday.

    The order is not expected to impact the drawdown of US forces from Afghanistan, the statement added.

    Earlier, the Pentagon reported 94 new coronavirus cases, bringing to 435 the number of its infected servicemen and civilians, one of whom died of the disease.

    As of Wednesday, Johns Hopkins University reported that there are 60,155 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 827 deaths related to the disease in the United States.

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    Mark Esper, counter, troops, COVID-19, coronavirus, Pentagon, US
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