Coronavirus news – live: UK working to evacuate nationals from cruise ship as British couple say they have tested positive

Samuel Osborne
REUTERS

The government is “working to organise” a flight back to the UK for British nationals quarantined on board a cruise ship off the coast of Japan over coronavirus fears.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has been under pressure to fly the 74 Britons on the Diamond Princess home after the US chartered two planes and repatriated 340 of its citizens.

Meanwhile, the number of new coronavirus cases in mainland China fell below 2,000 for the first time since January and claimed another 98 lives, among them the head of a leading hospital in China’s central city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the viral outbreak.

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