A British man, who was quarantined on a cruise ship in Japan, has died from coronavirus.
The Japanese health ministry said the man was the sixth passenger on the Diamond Princess cruise ship. The ship was quarantined off Japanese coast.
He is the first Briton to die of coronavirus, often referred to as Covid-19. In the United Kingdom the illness was reported to 20 people. His name or age was not given by the ministry.
A Foreign Office spokesman said: “We are supporting the family of a British man who has died in Japan and are in contact with local authorities. Our sympathies and thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.”
Health minister Jo Churchill said earlier that she knew that a British man was “very sick” on board the ship.
She told BBC Radio that “The Foreign Office are supporting the family of a British man who has been very poorly and was a passenger onboard the Diamond Princess.
“I haven’t had confirmation, but I was aware there was a gentleman who was very very poorly.”
She added: “It is my understanding that this British national doesn’t in fact reside in the UK, but lives elsewhere in the world. Our sympathies and thoughts are with [his family] at this difficult time.”
Following testing positive for the Covid-19 virus, four Britons remained in Japan. They included Northamptonshire’s David and Sally Abel, who are recovering at a Japanese hospital. Last week, thousands of others flew back to the UK following unsuccessful testing.