14 ‘Diamond Princess’ Passengers Test Positive During Flight Back To US; Tokyo Marathon Cancelled

It’s like the ‘Alien’ franchise: The evacuation ship always carries the monster.

Unfortunately, in this instance, the monster is an invisible, inaudible yet highly infectious virus. And instead of the Nostromo, we have two chartered Boeing 747s.

According to the New York Post, 14 Americans among the more than 300 US citizen passengers being evacuated from the cruise ship ‘Diamond Princess’ after nearly two weeks of quarantine have tested positive for the virus. Officials said they didn’t learn of the positive tests until the flight was about to take off.

Ahead of the flight, the State Department said that 40 Americans who had tested positive wouldn’t be eligible for the evacuation flight, and would instead be entrusted to Japanese authorities. Of course, all of the Americans who traveled on the evacuation flights had to agree to a two week quarantine after returning to the US.

The sick individuals were reportedly “isolated” during the flight (but in a closed environment like an airplane during flight, how secure could they possibly be?).

“These individuals were moved in the most expeditious and safe manner to a specialized containment area on the evacuation aircraft to isolate them in accordance with standard protocols,” the statement said. “During the flights, these individuals will continue to be isolated from the other passengers.”

One of the evacuation flights is headed to Travis Air Force Base in California, and another for Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. At this time, it’s unclear which plane the infected are traveling on, where they are going, or where they’ll be treated.

In other news, Japanese health authorities have decided to cancel a major public sporting event despite there only being 65 confirmed cases of the virus in Japan (outside the Diamond Princess): The Tokyo Marathon, which was set to begin later this month, has been cancelled

The annual event attracts hundreds of thousands of spectators to watch more than 20,000 runners compete in one of the six ‘World Marathon Majors’.

Many international events and trade shows have been cancelled because of the outbreak, including events like the Mobile world Conference in Barcelona, an area with zero confirmed COVID-19 infections, and the Beijing Autoshow, which was cancelled Monday morning, according to Reuters.

But the Tokyo Marathon is an important attraction for Tokyo’s tourism industry. Furthermore, it doesn’t bode well for another high-profile sporting event: The 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

At this point, we suspect the biggest tail risk for global markets involving Japan would be a decision to cancel or postpone the Olympics (it’s not like they can simply pick another venue). That would ignite a wave of hysteria and uproar that even these Fed-assisted markets likely wouldn’t be able to withstand.

Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/9mFqIRHKDGo/14-diamond-princess-passengers-test-positive-during-flight-back-us-tokyo-marathon

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