Coronavirus: Two passengers dead from quarantined Diamond Princess

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Two passengers from a cruise ship quarantined in Japan, have died after contracting the Covid-19 virus.

The two Japanese citizens were in their 80s and had underlying health conditions, local media said.

At least 621 people on the Diamond Princess tested positive for the virus - the biggest cluster outside mainland China.

Meanwhile China, where the outbreak began, has seen a sharp drop in the number of new infections.

The two passengers who died had already been taken off the ship last week and were being treated in hospitals.


"They were sent to medical facilities when they showed symptoms," Health Minister Katsunobu Kato said according to an AFP report. "I believe they received the best possible treatment."

The Diamond Princess was carrying 3,700 people in total and passengers who tested negative for the virus began leaving the ship on Wednesday after a 14 day quarantine.

Hundreds have now disembarked from the cruise. Others are set to leave over the next two days.


More than 150 Australian passengers have already arrived in Darwin, where they will begin two weeks of quarantine.

The first batch of people from Hong Kong have also flown back to the city, where they will similarly be quarantined.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the 74 Britons onboard the ship would be flown home on Friday. Indonesia is also set to repatriate its citizens.

But there are fears and criticism over Japan's handling of the quarantine on the Diamond Princess.


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