World • 20 February, 2020

Coronavirus: Two passengers dead from quarantined Diamond Princess

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Two passengers from a cruise ship quarantined in Japan, have died after contracting the Covid-19 virus, BBC reports.

Photo credit: Reuters

The two Japanese citizens were in their 80s and had underlying health conditions, local media said.

At least 621 people on the Diamond Princess tested positive for the virus - the biggest cluster outside mainland China.

Meanwhile China, where the outbreak began, has seen a sharp drop in the number of new infections.

The Diamond Princess was carrying 3,700 people in total and passengers who tested negative for the virus began leaving the ship on Wednesday after a 14 day quarantine.

Passengers continue to disembark on Thursday.

The two passengers who died had already been taken off the ship last week and were being treated in hospitals.

 

Japanese health expert Kentaro Iwata, professor at the infectious diseases division of Japan's Kobe University, visited the Diamond Princess and said the situation on board was "completely chaotic".

US officials have also said moves to contain the virus "may not have been sufficient".

But on Thursday a Japanese health ministry official responded to Mr Iwata's criticism, saying authorities had worked hard to deal with a very complicated situation.

 

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