Suez Crisis: 200,000-tonne Ever Given container ship freed using tug boats

The 200,000-tonne Ever Given container ship that blocked the Suez Canal for almost a week has finally been freed after operation using tug boats.

The 400 metre long Ever Given was wedged across the canal before salvage crews dislodged her on Monday.

It was not immediately clear when full traffic could resume in the canal.

Suez, which links Asia with Europe and the Middle East, is one of the world’s busiest trade routes. Companies had been forced to reroute vessels.

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Peter Berdowski, CEO of Dutch salvage company Boskalis, said the Ever Given had been refloated at 15:05HRS on Monday, “thereby making free passage through the Suez Canal possible again”.

The vessel was being towed to the Great Bitter Lake, which sits between two sections of the canal, where she will undergo a full inspection.

An initial investigation ruled out any mechanical or engine failure as a cause of the grounding, it also showed no reports of pollution or cargo damage.

Tug boats taking part in the operation honked their horns in celebration.

Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi thanked Egyptians for their efforts in “ending the crisis” in the canal, which connects the Mediterranean to the Red Sea.

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Suez officials dredged approximately 30,000 cubic metres of sand using 11 harbour tugs and two powerful seagoing tugs.

Officials on Sunday begunĀ to remove some of roughly 18,000 containers on board in order to lighten the load.

The containers are carrying a huge variety of items and the insured value of the cargo is believed to amount to hundreds of millions of dollars.

IN PICTURES: Ever Given chokes Suez Canal

READ: Longest traffic jam on the Suez Canal lasted for 8 years