Uruguay is thinking of a new “humanitarian corridor” to evacuate the crews of the Australian cruise ship Greg Mortimer, which is affected by COVID-19 and anchored 20 kilometers from the port of Montevideo, as the country’s foreign minister, Ernesto Talvi, explained on Wednesday, at a press conference.
“We let the company know that the Uruguayan government would like to see some kind of movement and solution for people who have been on the high seas for a long time,” said the minister, who went to Parliament to hold a meeting with the Commission of International Affairs of the Chamber of Deputies.
In this sense, Talvi pointed out that some of the options handled were that of making a new “humanitarian corridor” to evacuate part of the ship’s workers or make a replacement crew.
Last Thursday, the COVID-19 test was performed on the 87 people on board the Greg Mortimer and the results showed that 37 are carrying the disease.
For this reason, the minister assured that, despite the fact that from the Government they thought that by this date the ship would be ready to set sail, it is not yet.
So far, 126 occupants of the ship have returned to their countries on two medical flights that took 112 people to Australia and 14 to the United States.
During the conference and when asked about the bilateral relations between Uruguay and Australia, Talvi highlighted that they were always “impeccable” and that “they are even better” after this happened.
“The possibility of cooperation in research has multiplied in these days, in fact, we have received several inquiries from countries and companies that are thinking of Uruguay in order to locate themselves and I would say under a premise that in a certain sense we are surprised and Glad, and is that Uruguay responds in difficult, “said the minister visibly excited.
Accordingly, Talvi noted that Uruguay “lived up to its humanitarian tradition” and “lived up to the circumstances.”
“Uruguay is in difficult times and that is now part of our Country Brand as well,” he said.
On the other hand, Talvi spoke about the return to the country of Uruguayans and foreigners residing in the country who are abroad and added that there are 273 people left to return and that the “critical mass” is in Cuba, Spain, the United States, Italy, Dominican Republic.
Finally, the holder of the portfolio spoke about the situation of the dry border between Uruguay and Brazil, where in recent days there has been an increase in cases of COVID-19.
“We want to affect the life of the binational cities as little as possible, but some measures will be taken,” he stressed.
Accordingly, he pointed out that Uruguay will carry out sanitary and customs controls on bridges so that only those who are authorized to do so enter the country.
In addition, the foreign minister explained that the controls on a second border within Uruguayan territory will be strengthened.