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Couple now in isolation after escaping from quarantine hotel

NAfter escaping from a quarantine hotel in the Netherlands, a couple is now under quarantine in a clinic. “You are now in a place where you are isolated, in a hospital,” said a spokesman for the border police at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol on Monday. The number of returnees from South Africa who tested positive and infected with the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus has meanwhile increased to 14.

The fugitive couple, a 30-year-old Spaniard and a 28-year-old Portuguese, were caught on Sunday by border police on a plane that was supposed to fly to Spain. The two had previously fled a hotel in which travelers from South Africa who tested positive for the coronavirus are staying, some of whom were also found to have the new Omikron variant.

“We heard that people had left the hotel when they were advised not to. So we had to act and arrested them, “said border police spokesman Robert van Kapel of the AFP news agency. A spokeswoman for the municipality of Haarlemmermeer confirmed that the couple is now “in a hospital in the Netherlands”.

“Now they are isolated”

“These people were asked once to stay in the hotel, then they were urged a second time, now they are isolated. What they did wasn’t really smart, ”said spokeswoman Petra Faber. In the Netherlands, it is not illegal to go outside after a positive corona test. “But when you get on a plane and you know you’re infected, it’s a different story,” added Faber.

The Dutch authorities announced at the weekend that 13 of the 61 travelers who tested positive and who arrived at Schiphol Airport on Friday in two planes from South Africa were infected with the new Omikron variant. On Monday, the number of Omikron infected people increased to 14.

Almost all affected passengers were taken to the quarantine hotel near the airport. Some others were also allowed to go home in quarantine. Passengers who tested negative were also sent to quarantine at home.

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