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The Costa Luminosa cruise ship is seen in a Nov. 15, 2019, file photo.Jean-Paul Pelissier/Reuters

A trans-Atlantic cruise ship carrying several COVID-19 cases among its passengers and with dozens of Canadians aboard has docked in the French Mediterranean port city of Marseille.

Passengers who have airline or other tickets for travel back to their home countries will be allowed to disembark from the cruise ship, its port authority said on Thursday.

A port official told Reuters that 639 passengers, including 187 French nationals, would be allowed to leave the ship in small groups, depending on the timing of transport home.

There were more than 1,420 passengers on the liner, including 230 Americans, 168 Italians and 100 Canadians, according to the cruise operator, Italy’s Costa Cruises, a subsidiary of Carnival Corp.

French authorities have allowed the ship to stay for up to four days under strict conditions.

Global Affairs Canada has said officials are standing ready to provide consular assistance to the Canadians.

With files from The Associated Press and Reuters

Four Canadians crossed the Rainbow International Bridge at the border of Canada and the United States shortly after it was announced the mutual border would be closed to non-essential travel amid the spread of the coronavirus and shutdowns in both countries.

The Globe and Mail

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