By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

The US Emabassy in Japan announced today that the Department of State, working closely with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and other partner agencies, will provide a chartered aircraft to bring Diamond Princess passengers directly from Japan to the United States.

According to an email to American passengers and crew on board the vessel:

Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay

The aircraft will arrive in Japan the evening of February 16. Buses will move you and your belongings from the ship to the aircraft. Passengers will be screened for symptoms and we are working with our Japanese partners to ensure that any symptomatic passengers receive the required care in Japan if they cannot board the flight. The aircraft will land in the United States at Travis Air Force Base in California. Some passengers will then continue onward to Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. We will provide information about your final destination prior to boarding the plane.

Travelers returning to the United States from high-risk areas are required to undergo quarantine. Accordingly, you will need to undergo further quarantine of 14 days when you arrive in the United States. We understand this is frustrating and an adjustment, but these measures are consistent with the careful policies we have instituted to limit the potential spread of the disease. We appreciate your understanding and cooperation and will provide all the assistance we can to support the quarantine process.

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Should you choose not to return on this charter flight, you will be unable to return to the United States for a period of time. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will make a final determination on this matter.

The Embassy said they continue to collaborate closely with HHS, Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Government of Japan, and Carnival Cruise Lines on all aspects of this dynamic situation. The U.S. Embassy remains in close contact with all relevant authorities to ensure U.S. citizens aboard the ship, and their families, are fully informed as the situation develops.

The primary goal is to ensure the welfare and safety of all U.S. citizens involved.