Special to South Florida Times

Less than a week after a tour bus robbery prompted Carnival Cruise Lines and Princess Cruises to bypass two mid-week scheduled port calls in St. Kitts, executives of both lines announced the reinstatement of their original schedules.   

“I am happy to advise that Princess Cruises will resume its schedule of calls effective with the next calls of the Grand Princess and Emerald Princess on Dec. 1. We appreciate everything St. Kitts has done to mitigate this most unfortunate and unusual situation,” said Steve Nielsen, vice president for Caribbean and Atlantic Shore Operations with Princess Cruises.

Gordon Buck, vice president for Caribbean Relations at Carnival Cruise Lines, said service by his company would resume Friday, Nov. 26, “based on our confidence in the ability of St. Kitts to provide a safe and secure environment for our cruise guests, as well as crew members visiting the island.”

Tourism and International Transport Minister Senator Richard “Ricky” Skerritt confirmed that all cruise lines currently calling at St. Kitts had confirmed their intention to maintain their schedules, based on swift implementation of additional security measures in the tourist areas.

Five robbery suspects were arrested Nov. 18 and charged with robbery.
“Our local security forces deserve commendation on their rapid response in apprehending the perpetrators of this unprecedented crime,” Skerritt said. “Increased police presence was already in place by the time the Celebrity Summit made its scheduled port call the very next day after the incident.”