Government of Canada evacuating Canadians on board Diamond Princess cruise ship

News release

February 15, 2020 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

Ensuring the health and safety of Canadians is our top priority.

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, and the Honourable Harjit Sajjan, Minister of National Defence, today announced that the Government of Canada has chartered a plane to repatriate Canadians on board the Diamond Princess cruise ship docked in Yokohama, Japan.

This decision was taken because of the extraordinary circumstances faced by passengers on the Diamond Princess and to lighten the burden on the Japanese health-care system. We are working closely with Carnival Cruise Lines and the Government of Japan to assist in this evacuation.

The aircraft will bring passengers from Japan to Canadian Forces Base Trenton, after which they will be assessed and transported to the NAV Canada Training Institute in Cornwall, Ontario, to undergo a further 14-day period of quarantine.

Before boarding in Japan, passengers will be screened for symptoms. Those who exhibit symptoms of COVID-19 will not be permitted to board and will instead be transferred to the Japanese health system to receive appropriate care.

Those who remain in Japan will continue to receive full consular services from the Government of Canada.

In addition to experts from the Public Health Agency of Canada and Canadian Armed Forces medical personnel, four members of the Standing Rapid Deployment Team (SRDT) are on the ground in Tokyo to assist Canadians during this difficult time.

We will continue to provide more information on travel plans for returning to Canada as it becomes available. In the meantime, we ask all Canadians aboard the Diamond Princess to continue to follow recommendations for protecting their health and the health of others while under Japanese quarantine.

Canadians in countries affected by COVID-19 are encouraged to sign up with the Registration of Canadians Abroad service to receive the latest updates from the Government of Canada.

Canadians in Japan in need of emergency consular assistance can contact the Embassy of Canada to Japan in Tokyo at +81 (0) 3-5412-6200 or email tokyo-consul@international.gc.ca. Canadians can also contact Global Affairs Canada’s 24/7 Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa at +1 613 996 8885 or email sos@international.gc.ca.

Quotes

“The Government of Canada takes the health and safety of Canadians, both at home and abroad, very seriously. In light of the extraordinary circumstances facing our citizens on the Diamond Princess, we are taking action to return Canadians home from Japan, while ensuring that appropriate measures are in place to prevent and limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.”

- Hon. François-Phillippe Champagne, Minister of Foreign Affairs

“The Government of Canada will help Canadians return home following the outbreak of COVID-19 on the Diamond Princess. Our public health experts on the ground will continue to assist Canadians who are currently under quarantine in Japan or in hospital undergoing treatment.”

- Hon Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health

“The women and men of the Canadian Armed Forces stand ready to assist with bringing our fellow Canadians home. We will work in close cooperation with our federal and provincial partners to welcome home those returning.”

- Hon. Harjit Sajjan, Minister of National Defence

Associated links

Contacts

Syrine Khoury
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs
Syrine.Khoury@international.gc.ca

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
343-203-7700
media@international.gc.ca
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Thierry Bélair
Office of the Minister of Health
613-957-0200

Media Relations
Public Health Agency of Canada
613-957-2983
hc.media.sc@canada.ca

Floriane Bonneville
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of National Defence
613-996-3100

Media Relations
Department of National Defence
613-904-3333
mlo-blm@forces.gc.ca


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