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Spanish ports turning away cruise ships for 14 days

Spain's numerous cruise destinations, including Barcelona here, will be turning away passenger ships for the next two weeks
Passenger ships from Italy and cruise ships from any origin will not be permitted in Spanish ports starting Friday and through March 26.

Spain's Council of Ministers made the decision during an extraordinary meeting today, in an effort to limit the spread of coronavirus.

This temporary measure may be extended for additional periods not exceeding 14 days and evaluated periodically, particularly taking into account the evolution of the pandemic, especially in Italy.

Ship cases would burden shoreside health services

The restriction is intended to reduce the threat of coronavirus transmission in ports and destinations since 'cases on a ship would have a very important impact both on the passengers and the crew, as well as on the health services of the town where the ship docked,' the Council said.

The Ministry of Health has the authority to lift the ban in exceptional circumstances, under strict sanitation controls.

The measure closely follows the prohibition of flights between Italy and Spanish airports on March 10.