onsdag 12. februar 2020

Cruise ship refused port over virus fears to dock in Cambodia – operator

Cambodia has agreed to let a cruise ship that has been turned away by five countries over fears that someone aboard may have the coronavirus to dock and disembark its passengers, the ship’s operator has said. The MS Westerdam, which has 1,455 passengers and 802 crew on board, will dock at the Cambodian sea port of Sihanoukville on Thursday, Holland America Line said.

The ship – which says it has no sick passengers – has been turned away from Thailand, Japan, Taiwan, Guam and the Philippines, prompting fears prior to Wednesday’s announcement that it could run out of food as it searched for a port. “We will immediately begin making our way to Sihanoukville in Cambodia,” Westerdam captain Vincent Smit told passengers. “There will be a brief health inspection on board by the Cambodian authorities which will take place at anchor just before we arrive.” The ship is expected to arrive in Cambodia at about 7am (0000 GMT) on Thursday, he said.

Crew members staged a farewell ceremony for passengers on Wednesday morning, singing to the tune of the 1979 hit We Are Family by Sister Sledge.