June 14, 2021

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Biden announces a tribute to victims of Covid-19 on the eve of his inauguration

Photo: EFE / EPA / SHAWN THEW / File

WASHINGTON – The committee that organizes the inauguration of the president-elect, Joe Biden, announced this Thursday that on the eve of that inauguration it will organize a tribute ceremony for the victims of Covid-19 in the country, where the pandemic has already left more than 342,000 dead.

The plan for the eve of Biden’s inauguration is more solemn than those usually scheduled before a new president comes to power, but it seeks to help the country “come together to end the pandemic,” explained the Investiture Committee. Presidencial (PIC) in a statement.

The main ceremony will take place on January 19 in Washington, where the outline of the reflecting pool located in front of the Lincoln Memorial, one of the most iconic of the capital and where Martin Luther King gave his famous speech “I have a dream ”(“ I have a dream ”) in 1963.

“This will be the first time the outline of the reflecting pool has been illuminated in memory of lost lives of Americans,” the PIC statement said.

That ceremony will take place at 5:30 pm, and the committee has urged cities and towns across the country to illuminate their buildings and ring their church bells at that same time, to share a “national moment of unity. and remember”.

“In the midst of a pandemic, when so many Americans are grieving the loss of family, friends and neighbors, it is important that we honor those who have died and reflect on what has been one of the most challenging periods in the nation’s history.” said PIC communications director Pili Tobar in the statement.

The ceremony also seeks to “renew the commitment” of Americans to “unite to end the pandemic and rebuild the country,” he added.

It is not clear yet whether Biden himself or his running mate, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, will attend the Washington ceremony, according to the PIC.

Biden will be sworn in the next day, January 20, in an atypical inauguration, which is expected to reflect the president-elect’s caution regarding Covid-19 and his willingness to follow scientific recommendations.

The president-elect will take office in the traditional venue, an open-air stage outside the Capitol, but most other aspects of the day have been modified due to the pandemic, and the concert and dances will be broadcast. telematically.

The organizing committee for the pandemic has urged Americans not to travel to Washington to witness the inauguration, in order to avoid crowds on the National Mall, the open-air esplanade where hundreds of thousands of people usually congregate when a new leader arrives. to the power.

The United States is the country in the world with the most infections and deaths due to the pandemic, with 19.7 million cases and more than 342,000 deaths from Covid-19, and is in full swing of deaths and hospitalizations due to the disease.

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