Ships Return to Island After Tourist's Murder
The Caribbean island of Antigua, where a cruise ship passenger was murdered last year, is back on the roster of Star Clippers for the 2010/2011 winter season.
The small-ship cruise line had canceled visits to the island last year after one of its passengers, Nina Elisabeth Nilssen, 29, of California, was murdered near a popular beach. She had been cruising aboard the 227-passenger Royal Clipper.
Star Clippers previously said it had concerns about safety and security of passengers, but in a statement said it now believes the island has since worked to resolve the situation. Plans are for the Royal Clipper and 170-passenger Star Clipper to both regularly visit Antigua this winter.
"Star Clippers has been assured by the Antiguan government that they have improved security on the island, particularly areas where our guests visit," said Jack Chatham, president of Star Clippers Americas.
"We will do a site inspection prior to our November 2010 port calls in Antigua to determine if all our concerns have been addressed. If we conclude that issues of safety and increased security have not been resolved to our satisfaction, we will change the itineraries of Royal Clipper and Star Clipper to include alternative ports of call," he added. Following her murder, Star Clippers had re-routed its ships to Nevis.
Nilssen was discovered stabbed to death last January near Pigeon Point Beach. She had been hiking on a trail nearby. Reports said she had been on the ship celebrating her sister's wedding, with family and friends. A 24-year-old local man was arrested in the case, and confessed to the murder.