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Cruise ship quarantined over A/H1N1 flu leaves Venezuela


MOSCOW, June 18 (RIA Novosti) - A cruise ship that was quarantined off Venezuela's coast following an outbreak of the A/H1N1 infection on board left Venezuela on Thursday, the country's Nacional newspaper said, citing the vessel's owner.

The Spanish-owned Ocean Dream was on a nine-day cruise across the Caribbean Sea, when the A/H1N1 virus was confirmed in three crew members on June 14. The vessel had 759 passengers and 400 crew on board.

Following the report of an outbreak, Venezuelan authorities ordered the ship to dock for quarantine at the island of Margarita until June 24.

The vessel's owner, Pullmantur, dismissed the 10-day quarantine reports, saying that the ship continued its journey after 342 Venezuelans left the vessel on Thursday morning.

"The vessel, as scheduled, will continue its journey to Aruba, where the remaining passengers and crew members will leave the ship in compliance with all precautions established by Aruba's health authorities," Pullmantur said in a statement quoted by the local media.

According to media reports, two Russian passengers are onboard the ship.

Venezuela's health ministry reported that some 60 cases of swine flu have so far been registered in the country. As of June 17, a total of 39,620 cases have been registered worldwide, with 167 deaths, according to the World Health Organization.

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