By Andrew Atkinson

An unnamed Spanish man and Portuguese woman, who were in quarantine after testing positive for Covid-19 have been arrested after attempting to fly to Spain.

Dutch military police say they have arrested a married couple who left a hotel where they were in quarantine after testing positive for Covid-19 and attempting to flee the country.

“The couple were arrested in an airplane that was about to depart”, said the Marechaussee police force in a statement.

It is unclear whether the couple had tested positive for the new Omicron coronavirus variant.

The Amsterdam newspaper Het Parool reported that the couple, a Spanish man and Portuguese woman, were attempting to fly to Spain.

Dozens of passengers – who tested positive for Covid-19 after arriving on two flights from South Africa on November 26 were being kept in quarantine at a hotel near Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport.

The Marechaussee statement said the couple had been handed over to health authorities.

More than 600 passengers were on the flights from Johannesburg and Cape Town, with 61 testing positive.

Most were quarantining at the hotel. Some Dutch residents were allowed to quarantine at home.

Dutch health authorities said on November 28 that at least 13 of the 61 were infected with the newly identified Omicron variant of the virus.

The Marechaussee police did not release further details of the couple’s medical status.

The Public Prosecution Service is yet to determine whether the couple will be prosecuted.