Professor denies he was pressured to remove videos on virus-hit ship
Japan Today -- Feb 21
A Japanese infection control expert removed YouTube videos Thursday in which he criticized the handling of the coronavirus outbreak on the Diamond Princess cruise ship quarantined in Yokohama, saying the situation had improved.

In a Twitter post, Kentaro Iwata, a professor at Kobe University Hospital, said, "I removed my YouTube clip myself since there is no need for further discussing this." The videos in Japanese and English had garnered over 1.5 million and 300,000 views, respectively.

Iwata told a video press conference at the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan the same day, "The post became so viral and viewed by many people, and yesterday I was informed that significant improvement was done inside the cruise ship," denying he had been pressured to delete the videos.

In the videos, Iwata described the situation on the cruise ship as "chaotic" with bureaucrats in charge and no clear distinction between infected and infection-free zones.

Iwata was allowed aboard on Tuesday as a member of the government's disaster medical assistance team but was soon asked to leave the vessel for not doing what he was supposed to, according to the government.

News source: Japan Today
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