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Suez Canal says traffic in channel resumes after stranded ship refloated

CAIRO: The giant container ship that blocked the Suez Canal for almost a week was fully floated on Monday and traffic in the waterway would resume, the canal authority said in a statement.

A Reuters witness saw the ship moving and a shipping tracker and Egyptian TV showed it positioned in the centre of the canal.

Ship-tracking service VesselFinder has changed the ship’s status to under way on its website.

The 400-metre (430-yard) long Ever Given became jammed diagonally across a southern section of the canal in high winds early on Tuesday, halting shipping traffic on the shortest shipping route between Europe and Asia.

At least 369 vessels were waiting to transit the canal, including dozens of container ships, bulk carriers, oil tankers and liquefied natural gas (LNG) or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) vessels, SCA Chairman Osama Rabie told Egypt’s Extra News on Sunday.

Egypt’s Leth Agencies tweeted the ship had been partially refloated, pending official confirmation from the Suez Canal Authority.

The Suez Canal Authority had earlier said in a statement that tugging operations to free the ship had resumed. The Suez Canal salvage teams intensified excavation and dredging on Sunday and were hoping a high tide would help them dislodge it.

Crude oil prices fell after news the ship had been re-floated, with Brent crude down by $1 per barrel to $63.67.

The ship’s technical manager Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM) did not immediately respond to a request to comment.

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