February 16, 2020 / 3:54 AM / in 2 months

Canada to evacuate passengers from virus-hit Diamond Princess cruise ship

(Reuters) - Canada has chartered a plane to evacuate its citizens onboard the Diamond Princess cruise liner docked in Yokohama, Japan, the Canadian government said in a statement late on Saturday.

Canadian passengers who exhibit symptoms of the coronavirus infection will not be permitted to board the flight and will instead be transferred to the Japanese health care system to receive appropriate care, the government said.

After arriving in Canada, the passengers will undergo a 14-day period of quarantine, the statement added.

The United States and Hong Kong have said they will send aircraft to Japan to bring back passengers from the quarantined cruise ship, which has seen the most coronavirus infections outside of China.

The cruise ship, owned by Carnival Corp, and carrying some 3,700 passengers and crew, has been quarantined in Yokohama since Feb. 3 after a man, who disembarked in Hong Kong before it traveled to Japan, was diagnosed with the virus.

Reporting by Aakriti Bhalla in Bengaluru; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman

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