Two U.S. sailors aboard a French aircraft carrier have tested positive for the coronavirus, the U.S. Navy said Wednesday.
Those sailors are “receiving excellent host nation medical care at French facilities,” the Navy said in a news release.
“We are working closely with our NATO ally to fight against the virus, and we are confident that our sailors are in good hands,” the Navy said. “We look forward to continued operations with the Charles de Gaulle and the French Navy in the future.”
Four U.S. sailors in total were serving aboard the FS Charles de Gaulle as part of the Navy’s personnel exchange program meant to strengthen relationships and communication with U.S. partners and allies.
The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier returned to its home port of Toulon on Sunday about 10 days ahead of schedule after the French Ministry for the Armed Forces confirmed at least 50 COVID-19 cases aboard the ship.
In a statement over the weekend, the ministry said all personnel from the ship would be quarantined in military facilities for 14 days.
U.S. Navy is battling its own coronavirus outbreak aboard an aircraft carrier, the USS Theodore Roosevelt.
The outbreak aboard the Roosevelt became a political firestorm after the ship’s captain warned of potentially dire consequences if most crew members weren't evacuated. The captain was fired when the letter with the warning leaked, the acting Navy secretary called the captain “stupid” or “naive,” and the secretary subsequently resigned.
As of Wednesday, the Navy said 615 sailors from the Roosevelt have tested positive for the virus, and 4,046 have been moved ashore in Guam.
One sailor from the ship died Monday. A second was admitted to an intensive care unit Tuesday for “increased observation due to shortness of breath” and remains there Wednesday.
Four other sailors from the Roosevelt are also being treated at the U.S. Naval Hospital Guam, but are not in intensive care.