Malta rejects ship with suspected Ebola case

AP News
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Posted: Sep 19, 2014 11:01 AM

VALLETTA, Malta (AP) — Malta has refused entry to a cargo ship with a Filippino on board who was showing symptoms of Ebola, citing fears the virus might spread on the Mediterranean island.

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said Malta was legally and morally right to refuse to let the Hong Kong-registered vessel MV Western Copenhagen come into port on Thursday. The ship, carrying 21 crewmen, had left from Guinea on its way to the Ukraine, and the captain had sought to dock in Malta to get medical treatment for the crewman.

"We cannot endanger our health system," Muscat said, adding that it was impossible to verify whether the information provided by the captain about the case was "understating or overstating" the patient's condition.

Maltese coast guard ships escorted the vessel out of Maltese waters.