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California Briefing / SAN DIEGO

Commander is relieved of duty

July 29, 2008|From the Associated Press

The Navy commander of the Pearl Harbor has been relieved of duty after the ship ran aground in the Persian Gulf, officials said Monday.

Cmdr. Xavier F. Valverde was relieved of command over the weekend after a preliminary inquiry into the July 21 grounding, according to a statement released by the Naval Surface Forces.

Rear Adm. Kendall Card of the Navy's Expeditionary Strike Group Three said he had lost confidence in Valverde's ability to command.

The ship suffered what Navy officials called a "soft grounding" off the coast of Kuwait and was able to back off the shoal under its own power, according to Naval Surface Forces.

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