World Country U.S. Virgin Islands

About the world country U.S. Virgin Islands, its location, size, population, and who is in power.

NATIONS OF THE WORLD

VIRGIN ISLANDS, U.S.

Location: Three major and several minor islands in the Caribbean, east of Puerto Rico. Size: 133 sq. mi. (344 sq. km.). Population: 115,000 (12% white, remainder black and Puerto Rican).

Who Really Rules: The U.S. Virgin Islands is a self-governing U.S. territory. The economy is dominated by American hotel companies, the Amerada Hess petroleum corporation (which operates one of the world's largest oil refineries there), and Martin Marietta Alumina. The islands have become a center for drug smuggling from South America to the U.S. The coast is not watched closely, and once goods are on the islands they are within U.S. customs boundaries.

As many as one quarter of the U.S. Virgin Islanders are aliens, immigrants, or temporary workers from other West Indies islands. Disliked by many indigenous residents, these migrants have organized to protect their interests.

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