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Uruguay set to finish repatriation of passengers from coronavirus-hit cruise ship - Metro US

Uruguay set to finish repatriation of passengers from coronavirus-hit cruise ship

FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: Australian cruise ship Greg Mortimer arrives at the port in Montevideo

MONTEVIDEO (Reuters) – The repatriation of the final 15 passengers from the Greg Mortimer cruise ship, stranded in Uruguayan waters since March 27 due to an outbreak of the coronavirus on board, will take place on Wednesday afternoon, the government said.

A medical plane will take the current 14 occupants of the ship, and another passenger to be discharged from a clinic in capital city Montevideo to Miami, where they will get on connecting flights to their homes in the United States, Britain, Sweden, France, Holland, Canada and Switzerland.

The Uruguayan Foreign Ministry said the ship will dock at Montevideo. Passengers will board a bus that will take them to the airport for a flight that will depart after 2000 GMT.

Four former Greg Mortimer passengers will remain hospitalized in the Uruguayan capital until they recover enough to travel home.

Over the weekend, Uruguay repatriated 112 Australians and New Zealanders from the cruise ship operated by Australian company Aurora Expeditions. Most of the total 128 passengers originally on board had tested positive for the virus.

The ship’s crew must finish their quarantine on board the vessel, and then start the trip to the Spanish port of Las Palmas, which was the originally planned destination for the tourist trip, the ministry said.

(Reporting by Fabian Werner, writing by Hugh Bronstein; Editing by Bill Berkrot)

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