Cruise ships could be converted into floating hospitals to treat cases of the novel coronavirus, US President Donald Trump said Thursday.
Micky Arison, the chairman of Carnival Corporation, which operates Carnival Cruise Line, “made the offer, it was a generous offer,” Trump said during a press conference.
“He said that he has some ships that would be ideally suited for what we are doing,” the president said, since the ships are “big and have a lot of rooms.”
“If we should need ships, a lot of rooms, they’ll be docked at New York and Los Angeles and San Francisco and different places.”
Carnival is the world’s leading cruise line.
Faced with an explosion of COVID-19 cases and a need to free up hospital beds, the US government moved Wednesday to dispatch the navy’s 1,000-room USNS Comfort hospital ship to New York, one of the worst-hit states in the country.
It is not yet clear when the ship will arrive at the New York city harbor.
As well as the Comfort, Trump has said that the USNS Mercy hospital ship would also be deployed.
The governors of California and Washington state quickly called for it to be dispatched to their shores.
The cruise industry was plunged into crisis since the start of the pandemic, when several ships were forced to lock down, with passengers and crew prevented from disembarking after coronavirus cases were confirmed onboard.
Trump announced on March 13 that major cruise lines would suspend trips from US ports for 30 days in response to the pandemic.
© 2020 AFP
This Europe country is housing quarantined coronavirus patients in a five-star hotel
An ambulance driver wearing a white protective gown enters a Barcelona hotel and announces the arrival of three new "customers" -- a trio of coronavirus patients discharged from hospital into luxury quarantine.
"Good morning! How are you? My name is Enrique Aranda and I am probably the first non health care worker you see in several days," says the director of the five-star Melia Sarria hotel, peering into the ambulance.
It took just three days to convert the hotel, which features contemporary decor and bathrooms with marble finishing, into a clinic.
"Some patients arrive thinking that they were taken out of hospital to be left to die, many people are frightened. I try to make them forget all that," said Aranda, wearing mask and gloves.
UK Labour to unveil new leader to replace Jeremy Corbyn
Britain's main opposition Labour party on Saturday unveils a new leader who will take the helm of a defeated and divided party in the midst of the coronavirus crisis.
Keir Starmer, a former director of state prosecutions and Labour's Brexit spokesman, is the runaway favourite to win the ballot of around 500,000 party members and succeed Jeremy Corbyn.
The announcement will be a low-key affair, with a planned special conference cancelled due to restrictions on social gatherings imposed to stem the spread of COVID-19.
Instead, the result will be put out in a press release mid-morning -- and candidates have been asked to pre-record their victory speeches.
‘Trump fires people for telling the truth’: President blasted for ‘dead of night decision’ to fire intel watchdog
President Donald Trump was harshly criticized on Friday for firing intelligence community Inspector General Michael Atkinson.
House Intel Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Senate Intel Ranking Member Mark Warner (D-VA) were among the lawmakers who took to Twitter to criticize Trump on his favorite social media platform.
Here's some of what people were saying about Trump's decision:
Trump’s dead of night decision to fire ICIG Michael Atkinson is another blatant attempt to gut the independence of the Intelligence Community and retaliate against those who dare to expose presidential wrongdoing.