02:11 GMT04 April 2020
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    The cruise ship Diamond Princess with 3,700 passengers on board was put into quarantine off the port of Yokohama in early February after several people were confirmed as having the coronavirus.

    Two passengers from the cruise ship Diamond Princess, a man and a woman in their 80s, have died, Japanese broadcaster NHK reported on Thursday, as the second group of passengers started leaving the ship after a two-week quarantine period on board. In total, three people have died in Japan from complications after being infected by the coronavirus.

    According to a Japanese health ministry official, about 500 passengers were expected to disembark, with another 100 people set to leave for chartered flights home on Thursday.

    The Russian Embassy in Japan said the individuals who passed away were not Russian citizens.

    On Wednesday, a group of passengers, who had tested negative and shown no symptoms of the disease, left the vessel. The passengers and crew members that remain in quarantine were those sharing a room with people who showed positive results.

    The Health Ministry could not provide information on how many people remain on board, or when disembarkation would be over.

    An outbreak of pneumonia caused by a new strain of coronavirus, which the WHO named COVID-19, was first registered in the Chinese city of Wuhan, Hubei Province, last December.

    According to the Chinese authorities, a total of 2,118 people have died from the coronavirus in mainland China, with about 74,576 people infected.

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) has designated COVID-19 as the official name of the new virus and declared a global health emergency over the coronavirus outbreak.

    Tags:
    coronavirus, Yokohama, Japan
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