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TURNBULL MEETS WITH NAVY ON SAFETY ISSUES

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Gov. Charles Turnbull met Tuesday with high-ranking U.S. Navy officials to reassure them that the territory is a safe port of call.
The meeting follows a visit by the USS Gettysburg over the Labor Day weekend to St. Croix in which a group of officers were robbed on the boardwalk in Christiansted and another crewman was mugged.
The Navy had suspended port calls to the territory in 1993 after dozens of assaults and the murder of an officer on St. Thomas. The incidents caused the Navy to categorize the U.S. Virgin Islands as the most dangerous place in the world for its sailors during peacetime.
It also ended the estimated $16 million a year pumped into the economy by visiting sailors. While former Gov. Roy Schneider convinced the Navy to resume calls to the territory in 1995, the number of visits have not returned to earlier levels.
Turnbull’s meeting with Rear Admiral Kevin Patrick Green was to reassure the Navy that the safety of visiting sailors is a priority with the administration, according to a Government House release. V.I. Police Department officials were at the meeting in order to discuss safety plans that include increased police patrols during port calls.
Green said it is still his "main responsibility to ensure his personnel will be safe during future visits to Virgin Islands ports."

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