Suez Canal: Ever Given container ship shifted from shoreline

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The stern of a huge container ship that has been wedged across the Suez Canal for almost a week has been freed from the shoreline, officials say.

The course of the 400m-long (1,300ft) Ever Given has been corrected by 80%, according to the Suez Canal Authority.

It added that further efforts to move the boat would resume later on Monday.

But the head of a company involved in the rescue efforts urged caution, warning that completing the operation would not be “a piece of cake”.

The Ever Given has been blocking one of the world’s busiest trade routes, forcing companies to reroute ships and causing long tailbacks of hundreds of vessels.

The reports that the ship had been partially freed raised hopes that traffic along the canal could resume within hours, clearing the way for an estimated $9.6bn (£7bn) of goods being held up each day.

Rescue workers from the authority and the Dutch company Smit Salvage used tug boats to wrench the rear of the ship from the canal bank.

The stern, which had been 4m from the shore, was now 102m clear, the Suez Canal Authority said, adding that the boat had been fully refloated.

Efforts to move the boat would resume at 11:30 local time (09:30 GMT) once the tide rises, officials said.

In a statement, the Suez Canal Authority said that once the tide reached 2m, rescue workers would aim to fully restore “the vessel’s direction so it is positioned in the middle of the navigable waterway”.

Traffic would resume once the ship was moved to a waiting area in a wider section of the canal, the authority said. A total of 367 vessels are waiting to pass through.

Agencies

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