23 passengers released without being tested
NHK -- Feb 23
Japan's health ministry says it has to retest 23 passengers who were allowed to leave a new coronavirus-stricken cruise ship in Yokohama port, as the initial testing procedure was incomplete.

All the passengers and crew onboard the Diamond Princess were tested at the start of a 14-day quarantine period around February 5.

Six-hundred-and-thirty-four passengers and crew were confirmed to have contracted the virus.

969 passengers who tested negative and were not showing symptoms were allowed to leave the ship between Wednesday and Friday.

But ministry officials found on Saturday that 23 of those released were not tested again after the quarantine period, which was a condition for their release.

The ministry says they tested negative with samples taken before February 5, and were not showing symptoms.

All 23 people, including four foreigners, are residents of Japan, and went home using public transportation on Wednesday and Thursday.

The ministry says three of them have been retested, 17 are scheduled to be, and that it is arranging to test the remaining three.

Health Minister Katsunobu Kato has apologized. He acknowledged that his ministry was responsible for the oversight, and that it will work to prevent a recurrence.

クルーズ船の乗客23人について、本来は必要な再検査をせずに下船させていたことが分かりました。  厚生労働省は3日に横浜港に入港したクルーズ船「ダイヤモンド・プリンセス」で、5日から乗客を船室で待機させるなどの感染拡大防止策を取っていました。乗客のうち23人は5日よりも前に受けた検査では「陰性」でしたが、その後に再検査を受けることなく、19日と20日に下船していました。最初に検査を受けた時点から5日までの間に感染した可能性があるため、加藤大臣はこれをミスと認めて「深く反省する」と謝罪しました。厚労省は23人全員に改めて検査をするということです。また、厚労省職員が感染したことを受け、加藤大臣は船内で事務作業などを担当した職員、全員にウイルス検査を実施すると明らかにしました。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
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