A cruise ship from Hong Kong was allowed to dock in a Cambodian port on February 13 after it was stranded at sea for days because countries were concerned about passengers bringing the new coronavirus ashore.
The MS Westerdam, which is operated by Holland America Line and had more than 1,455 passengers and 802 crew on board, had been turned away from five Asian ports due to fears of the coronavirus.
Westerdam was on a 14-day cruise that departed Hong Kong on February 1.
Holland America Line told authorities the ship did not have any cases of the virus on board. In a statement on February 12, the company said all guests on board were “healthy and despite erroneous reports there are no known or suspected cases of coronavirus on board, nor have their ever been.”
Holland America Line said it was “extremely grateful to the Cambodian authorities for their support,” adding that guests would disembark in Sihanoukville on February 13 and catch charter flights to Phnom Penh for forward travel home.
“Holland America Line will arrange and pay for all flights home, in addition to the full cruise refund and 100% future cruise credit already communicated,” the company said.
This video of the Westerdam docked in Cambodia was shared by Thmey Thmey, a local media outlet.
At the time of writing, the death toll from the coronavirus stood at 1,370. Credit: Thmey Thmey via Storyful