Dutch passengers allowed to leave cruise ship quarantined over coronavirus

Five Dutch passengers who were on board the quarantined Diamond Princess are now allowed to leave the cruise ship, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Wednesday. The last passengers of Dutch cruise ship Westerdam who are still in Cambodia, are now also allowed to leave the country, shipping company Holland America Line said in a statement, NU.nl reports.

Diamond Princess was quarantined in the port of the Japanese city of Yokohama for two weeks due to coronavirus Covid-19. During the quarantine period, the passengers had to stay in their cabins and were only allowed outside for short periods, provided that they kept a sufficient distance from each other.

A total of 454 of the cruise ship's passengers were diagnosed with Covid-19. None of the Dutch were infected by the virus. They can now return to the Netherlands "on their own", the Ministry said, according to NU.nl.

Cruise ship Westerdam docked in Cambodia last week after being refused entry by five Asian countries due to fear of the coronavirus, even though the passengers all tested negative for it. It docked in te port of Sihanoukville on Thursday. The next day the first passengers were allowed to go home.

An 83-year-old American woman was one of the passengers to depart for home on Friday. At an airport in Malaysia she tested positive for the corona virus, after which new precautions were taken. All the passengers were again tested for the virus and allowed to leave Cambodia once their test came back negative.

The last passengers will be able to leave the country on Wednesday, Holland America Line said. The 91 Dutch passengers will be checked over and monitored by health service GGD when they return home. 

The Westerdam is currently still occupied by 747 crew members awaiting the results of their Covid-19 tests. These results are expected within a few days.