HK charters flights to bring home cruise ship passengers

  • AseanPlus News
  • Monday, 17 Feb 2020

Ready to go: Packed suitcases and bags on board the ‘Diamond Princess’ which has been quarantined since arriving in Yokohama. — Reuters

HONG KONG: The government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region is arranging chartered flights to bring back home 330 Hong Kong residents stranded on board a quarantined cruise ship in Japan due to the Covid-19 (novel coronavirus) outbreak.

In a statement issued on Saturday, the Security Bureau said the chartered flights would carry for free Hong Kong residents allowed to disembark from the Diamond Princess, which remains quarantined in Yokohama for 11 days.

According to the cruise operator, there are around 330 Hong Kong residents on board, including 260 holding HKSAR passport and around 70 holding foreign passports.

“Once the Japanese authorities have confirmed the detailed arrangements, the government will inform the affected Hong Kong residents details of the return date and related arrangements as soon as possible, ” reads the statement.

Taking into consideration the potential risk on public health, the cruise ship passengers will have to remain at a quarantine centre for 14 days upon their arrival in Hong Kong, it said.

The Immigration Department and the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, Tokyo have been maintaining close contact with the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China in the HKSAR, the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Japan, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, to keep abreast of the updated conditions of those Hong Kong residents under quarantine on board the cruise ship.

“The HKSAR government will continue to urge the Japanese side to confirm the detailed arrangements for the disembarkation of the passengers on board as soon as possible, ” said the statement. —China Daily/ANN

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