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'Westerdam' passengers enter Cambodia

Passengers of 'MS Westerdam', a cruise ship that spent two weeks at sea after being turned away by five countries over fears that someone aboard might have the coronavirus, get off as it docks in Sihanoukville on Friday. (Reuters photo)

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SIHANOUKVILLE: Passengers on a cruise ship that spent two weeks at sea after being turned away by five countries over coronavirus fears started disembarking in Cambodia on Friday.

The Westerdam, carrying 1,455 passengers and 802 crew, docked in the Cambodian port town of Sihanoukville on Thursday. It had anchored offshore early in the morning to allow Cambodian officials to board and collect samples from passengers with any signs of ill health or flu-like symptoms.

After tests, no one on board was found to be carrying the virus, Cambodia's health ministry said.

Flights were being organised to help passengers return home.

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen personally greeted the passengers with handshakes and bouquets of roses as they stepped off the ship and boarded a waiting bus.

On Tuesday, the Westerdam tried to dock in Bangkok, but Thai authorities denied permission.

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Vocabulary:

anchor : to prevent a boat from moving by dropping a large very heavy object (an anchor) connected to the ship into the water - ทอดสมอ

bouquet : a collection of flowers, cut and tied together in an attractive way - ช่อดอกไม้

denied : a refusal to allow somebody to have something - ปฎิเสธ, ไม่ยอมรับ

dock (verb): to arrive at an enclosed area of water in a port, where ships stay; to stop a boat at a landing point such as a pier - จอดเรือ, เทียบท่า

permission : allowing someone to do something - การอนุญาต,การอนุมัติ,การยินยอม

sample : a small amount of a substance that is used for scientific or medical tests - ตัวอย่างทดลอง

virus (noun): a living thing, too small to be seen without a microscope, that causes infectious disease in people, animals and plants - เชื้อไวรัส

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