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Dispute over infected sailors assigned to Bremerton-based air craft carrier

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KOMO News file photo of the US Navy aircraft carrier USS Nimitz, which is home ported at Naval Base Kitsap located in Bremerton, WA.{ }

According to the Kitsap Sun Newspaper in Bremerton, the US Navy is denying that two sailors assigned to the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz have tested positive for COVID-19. Meanwhile, the vice-chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said yesterday that the Nimitz crew includes positive cases. The Joint Chiefs of Staff provide "professional military advice to the Secretary of Defense (Pentagon) and President" of the United States, according to Wikipedia.

US News reported , "There's been a very small number of breakouts on the Nimitz, and we're watching that very closely," Air Force Gen. John Hyten, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters at the Pentagon on Thursday about the 5,000-member crews. He said that those sailors have "been isolated on the ship."

Not enough local hotel space exists in Bremerton, Washington, where the ship is based, for its commanders to quarantine crew members, so they're attempting to isolate them on board, the general said.

Thursday's news represented a troubling problem for the U.S. military as it struggles to contain the fallout from the spread of the virus, which has affected more than 400 members of the crew of the USS Teddy Roosevelt, currently docked in Guam. Military officials continue to insist the ship is capable of deploying if needed, even though more than half of its crew has disembarked on the island to enter quarantines.


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