OTTAWA – The federal government is negotiating with the panamanian authorities so that Canadians who are on the ship Zaandam, currently off the coast of panama, to be repatriated to the country.
This is what has made Justin Trudeau, who was interviewed Saturday on some 250 Canadians who are on the “ocean liner Zaandam” of the company Holland America. The latter announced the death of four persons on board in connection with the COVID-19.
“We have contacted the panamanian government and we are working directly with them,” said Mr. Trudeau.
“A lot of families here feel anxious and really want that to Canadians who are abroad are brought back to the house. All the staff of global Business Canada, focuses on this herculean task”, he added.
The minister of foreign Affairs abounded in the same sense. “Our priority is to help as many Canadians as possible blocked abroad in these difficult times,” said François-Philippe Champagne his Twitter account.
This last was said to have been in contact with the big boss of the company Holland America as well as with the head of the diplomacy of Panama.
“Medical supplies have now been transferred to the ship”, he added.
In a press release, Holland America reported Friday that 53 passengers and 85 crew members are ill with flu symptoms. In addition, at least two passengers on the ship, which has about 1800 people on board, were declared positive for the coronavirus.
The Zaandam has left Buenos Aires on march 7 and had to moor at San Antonio, Chile, but the authorities of this country have refused berthing.
Liner Zaandam : Panama finally allowed the crossing of the channel
PANAMA | The panama government announced on Saturday that he authorized finally to the cruise ship Zaandam, on board of which several cases of the COVID-19 have been reported to cross the Panama canal.
“The crossing by the route of inter-oceanic will be allowed for that (the ship) may continue on its journey,” it said in a press release the ministry of Health, which states that the government’s position has been “revalued” to bring “humanitarian aid” to the ship.
“No passenger or crew member will not be allowed to land on the soil of panama “, said however the government.
The panamanian authorities had initially allowed the ship and its 1,800 passengers and crew to embark on the Panama canal, before returning Friday on their decision for ” health reasons “.
The company’s Holland America group (Carnival), which operates the ship, announced Friday the death of four passengers, without specifying the cause, and the contamination of at least two other Covid-19.
It had also announced the transfer on Saturday the passengers healthy on board another ship, the Rotterdam, sent in panamanian jurisdictional waters from the port of San Diego, in the United States, to reduce the risk of contamination.
The Rotterdam had made food, the staff, and tests of Covid-19.
“The transhipment of passengers not showing symptoms of the cruise ship Zaandam aboard the liner Rotterdam has started “, said Saturday the Panama maritime Authority (AMP) on his Twitter account.
The exact number of passengers transferred has not pou the time specified. But on Friday, the minister of panama, maritime Affairs, Noriel Arauz, had indicated to the AFP that about 400 people had been declared negative Covid-19 and could be accommodated on board the Rotterdam.
The cruise on the Zaandam, which began in Buenos Aires on 7 march, to be completed in San Antonio, Chile. But the chilean authorities refused the landing, while many passengers exhibited flu-like symptoms.
The other ports in south america on its way to him have subsequently been shut-in due to restrictions put in place by governments to try to curb the spread of the outbreak of novel coronavirus.
According to the company, passengers could disembark at the port of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States.