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DFA: PH drafting return of Filipino staff in virus-hit ship docked in Nagasaki

/ 09:45 PM April 28, 2020

Italian-operated cruise ship the Costa Atlantica is anchored at a port in Nagasaki, southern Japan on Thursday, April 23, 2020. Japanese officials said more crew members on the docked cruise ship have the coronavirus. The ship has been docked in Nagasaki since late January for repairs and maintenance, and has only crew on board. (Kyodo News via AP FILE)

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Tuesday said it is coordinating with Japanese authorities to map out arrangements for the repatriation of Filipino crew members aboard a virus-hit cruise ship docked in Nagasaki.

DFA also said in a statement it is monitoring the situation of Filipino workers in MV Costa Atlantica. where at least 48 of its around 600 crew members have tested positive for the novel coronavirus or SARS-CoV-2 that causes respiratory illness coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19.

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DFA said it has yet to confirm any recorded case of COVID-19 among members of the Filipino crew.

The Philippine Embassy in Tokyo and Philippine Consulate General in Osaka together with Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) are working closely with Japan’s authorities and the cruise ship’s management to ensure the well-being of Filipinos on board in accordance with relevant health and safety protocols being enforced by the Japanese government amid the pandemic.

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“Cognizant of the quarantine period and established epidemiological health and safety practices laid down by the Japanese government, the Embassy, the Consulate General, along with the POLO and OWWA in Japan, are likewise in the process of mapping out with the Japan government the arrangements for the safe and orderly repatriation of the Filipino crew members,” DFA said.

The latest figures from DFA showed that 1,604 Filipinos abroad have so far contracted COVID-19.

Of the number, 996 are still undergoing treatment while 419 Filipino patients have recovered.

DFA has also reported a total of 189 fatalities due to the disease among overseas Filipinos as of Tuesday.

For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

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