Jamaica refuses to accept cruise ship passengers over coronavirus fears



A cruise ship carrying thousands of passengers has not been allowed to enter Jamaica over coronavirus fears.  The 4,500-capacity MSC Meraviglia is heading for another port having been detained in Ocho Rios since 9am after red flags were reportedly raised by health inspectors onboard.  Reports on the ship suggest Jamaican immigration is “currently denying disembarkation” after a crew member fell ill on board. The Filipino worker is said to had been in Manila within the last few days.  It is currently waiting a mile offshore. after arriving earlier this morning from Miami.  Passengers have been seen standing on deck but there has been no confirmed cases detected with one report saying action has been taken as a precaution.  Are you on board the cruise ship? Contact webnews@mirror.co.uk  Passenger Laura O’Neill said she had no idea what was going on until she read Mirror Online’s story.  She told us moments ago: “We’ve just been told that we will be departing Ocho Rios since we are not being allowed entry.  “We have received no communication as to why we are not allowed off the boat except for announcements saying that we are waiting for officials to clear us.  “This has been going on since 9am with no additional communication from anyone on board. If it wasn’t for the article, I would have no clue as to what is actually going on.”  Another woman on board said: “Before boarding in Miami our temperatures were taken to make sure.Staff encourages us to clean our hands before entering buffet and restaurants areas.  There are stations with disinfectant in every floor and main areas.  “The frustration was palpable amongst us passengers. We were looking forward to enjoying the beaches, the food and the culture.”  Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton told Radio Jamaica News that the Jamaican authorities had asked that the ship be kept “a mile or so offshore out of an abundance of caution”.  The MSC Meraviglia was launched in June 2017 and sails to more than 200 destinations around the world.  Global cases of the virus have now passed 80,000, the vast majority of those in China.  Hours earlier, a hotel in Tenerife was been placed on locked down after a visiting Italian doctor and his wife tested positive.  Guests at the Costa Adeje Palace Hotel are not allowed to leave their rooms.  The World Health Organization said on Monday the world should do more to prepare for a possible pandemic.  Health Secretary Matt Hancock today said he was “not planning” a trip to northern Italy as the Government defended its approach to the coronavirus outbreak.  People coming back from affected areas have been told to self-isolate but the Foreign Office has not changed its travel advice, meaning flights continue to take Britons to the region.  Downing Street insisted its approach was based on medical evidence but stressed that travel advice was kept under review.  US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is “deeply concerned” that Iran’s government may have suppressed cruc

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