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A cruise ship has been denied entry into Mauritius due to a suspected cholera outbreak onboard, leaving thousands of passengers stranded and fearing days of quarantine.

Among the 2,200 passengers aboard the Norwegian Dawn are British holidaymakers, who describe the ship as "aimlessly floating" since Mauritian authorities refused docking to mitigate potential health risks.

Another group of tourists, around the same number as those on the vessel, were unable to board and were accommodated in hotels after queuing at the port.

The 12-day cruise originating from South Africa via Mozambique was scheduled to dock in Port Louis on Sunday but arrived a day earlier after skipping a stop at Reunion Island.

One British traveler, intending to begin the cruise over the weekend, expressed reluctance to board due to contamination fears, contemplating expensive flights back to the UK.

Reports indicate at least 15 individuals, including 14 passengers and one crew member, are isolated with vomiting and diarrhea symptoms.

Amidst the uncertainty, passengers face disruptions to travel plans, with potential financial losses on flights and hotel bookings.

Mauritian authorities have yet to confirm the nature of the health risk, emphasizing the importance of safety for passengers and the country.

The Norwegian Cruise Line disclosed that some passengers exhibited mild stomach-related illness symptoms during the voyage to South Africa on February 13. Precautions were taken upon reaching Port Louis, with collaboration between ship management and Mauritian authorities.

Results of the port authority's tests are awaited within 48 hours, impacting the scheduled disembarkation and embarkation of approximately 2,000 passengers and 2,279 new passengers, respectively.

The Norwegian Dawn's operations have been postponed until February 27, affecting passengers' travel plans and highlighting concerns over health and safety protocols on cruise ships. Photo by Fletcher6, Wikimedia commons.