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Filipina crew captures light moment inside COVID-19-hit cruise ship

By Martin Sadongdong

A Filipina crew of the luxury cruise ship Diamond Princess stranded off Japan’s waters shared a video of the staff dancing to a Justin Bieber song on Friday, Valentine’s Day, in what appears to be a light moment for them, apparently far from the trauma they have been experiencing since last week after several of its passengers tested positive for the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Mae Fantillo took to Twitter to express how they were trying to find a glimmer of hope amid the ordeal that they were experiencing inside the cruise ship.

The kitchen crew were seen in a video dancing to Bieber’s song “Yummy”, which was posted by Fantillo on her Twitter account.

“We all know that we [are] facing a crisis here in Diamond Princess due to NCoV [or COVID-19] but hey we still managed to smile, laugh, and dance,” Fantillo wrote on her post.

Inside the luxury cruise ship are over 2,600 passengers and 1,000 crew-members forced to be quarantined in their cabins after 10 people were initially confirmed for the deadly coronavirus last week.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a total of 46,997 cases of COVID-19 have already been recorded around the globe as of Thursday, February 13. Of these, 174 cases were noted in Diamond Princess within the same period.

However, a report from The Guardian said that the number of infected passengers and crew-members have already reached 218 as of Friday, February 14.

The cruise ship has since been unable to dock and was stuck in isolation at the Daikoku Pier in Yokohama, per multiple reports.

But Fantillo said she filmed the crew dancing to an upbeat song to let their families know that “we [are] okay here and we will stand together as one until we finish the quarantine.”

The 14-day quarantine period for the passengers and crew of the Diamond Princess — which started on the day of the discovery of the infection among its passengers last February 5 — is already on its last leg as they are set to finish it on February 19.

“Five more days brothers and sisters,” Fantillo said in her post.

The video of the Diamond Princess’ dancing crew earned the admiration and support not only of Japanese social media users but also of other nationalities.

As of 4 a.m. Saturday, the video was already viewed at least 39,900 times, and garnered 1,773 likes with 602 retweets.

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