Agency, 7 February : Another 41 people quarantined on a cruise liner off Japan tested positive for coronavirus on Friday, bringing the total confirmed cases to 61, with thousands of passengers confined to cabins as testing continues.
The cruise ship, Diamond Princess, and the roughly 3,700 people aboard have been under two-week quarantine since arriving back at the port of Yokohama, just south of Tokyo, on Monday after a man who disembarked in Hong Kong was diagnosed with the virus.
The 61 cases came from a sample of 273 people who had been tested because they were either showing symptoms or had been in close contact with those who did, according to the health ministry.
Health Minister Katsunobu Kato told a news conference 21 of the newly found 41 cases were Japanese. Further tests would be conducted if additional passengers on board the ship developed symptoms, he said.
Video footage showed blue and white hoardings put up in the vessel as passengers diagnosed with the virus were being moved out to medical facilities.
The new patients would be transported to hospitals in Tokyo and neighbouring towns, the health ministry said.
The rise in the number of infections has worsened the mood for passengers stuck on the cruise, who were only allowed onto open decks briefly for fresh air.
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