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Hong Kong-flagged vessel runs aground in Egypt’s vital Suez Canal

By Associated Press
Published: May 25, 2023, 8:12am

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A Hong Kong-flagged ship ran aground in Egypt’s vital Suez Canal, authorities and tracking data showed early Thursday.

The Xin Hai Tong 23 ran aground at the southern mouth of the Suez Canal, tracking data showed. Leth Agencies, which oversees traffic in the canal, acknowledged the grounding.

“Suez Canal tugs are currently trying to re-float the vessel,” Leth said.

Egyptian authorities did not immediately acknowledge the ship running aground. It wasn’t immediately clear what affect the grounding would have on traffic in the canal, which connects the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea. However, tracking data showed no shipping vessels moving around that area of the canal.

Tracking data showed the vessel describing its condition as “not under command.” Tug boats surrounded it.

The ship is a bulk carrier, which typically carries cargo. The ship measures some 190 meters (625 feet) by 32 meters (105 feet).

The Ever Given, a colossal container ship that crashed into a bank on a single-lane stretch of the canal in March 2021, blocking the waterway, was bigger than that. A massive salvage effort by a flotilla of tugboats, helped by the tides, freed the skyscraper-sized vessel six days later, ending the crisis and allowing hundreds of waiting ships to pass through the canal.