Thailand blocks cruise ship turned away by three countries from docking at Laem Chabang


BANGKOK (The Nation/ANN): The Holland-US MS Westerdam cruise ship will not be allowed to dock at Laem Chabang Port in Chonburi province after having been turned away by three countries over fears of the new coronavirus spreading.

Referring to the company’s website, which stated that Thailand would allow the ship to dock at Laem Chabang Port on Thursday (Feb 13), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul posted on his Facebook page past midnight on Tuesday (Feb 11) that he had issued orders not to allow the ship to dock in Thailand.

Anutin blocks cruise ship turned away by three countries from docking at Laem Chabang

The Holland-US “MS Westerdam” cruise ship will not be allowed to dock at Laem Chabang Port in Chonburi province after having been turned away by three countries over fears of the new coronavirus spreading.

The Japanese government had earlier prohibited the ship from docking at Yokohama Port to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, so the cruise company had turned to Thailand for help.

According to the previous arrangement, some 2,000 passengers would have disembarked in Chonburi and been transported directly to Don Muang International Airport to board planes to their home countries.

MS Westerdam was registered under Holland America Line with head office in Seattle, US. It left Singapore on Jan 16 for a month-long tour of Asia. It had picked up 600 passengers from Hong Kong on Feb 1. But it was denied docking by the Philippines, Taiwan and Japan, fearing there might be infected persons on the ship. - The Nation/Asia News Network

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