Photos: Suez Canal maintains normal traffic amid Red Sea tensions, says Chief



Sun, 17 Dec 2023 - 03:49 GMT


Sun, 17 Dec 2023 - 03:49 GMT

CAIRO – 17 December 2023: Osama Rabie, Chairman of the Suez Canal Authority, emphasized the normal flow of navigation through the Suez Canal, stating that the authority is closely monitoring the potential repercussions of ongoing tensions in the Red Sea on the canal's traffic.

According to a statement from the authority, Rabie highlighted that they are closely monitoring the situation and evaluating the impact of certain shipping lines temporarily shifting their routes to the Cape of Good Hope on navigation through the Canal.

Rabie pointed out that since November 19th, only 55 vessels have opted for the Cape of Good Hope route, which is significantly lower compared to the 2,128 vessels that transited the Canal during the same period.

On Sunday, Rabie reported that 77 vessels, with a total net tonnage of 4 million tons, successfully transited the Canal. Some of these vessels were affiliated with the shipping lines that announced the temporary shift in their routes.

Rabie reaffirmed the Suez Canal's status as the fastest and shortest route for vessels transiting between Asia and Europe. He highlighted the considerable time savings, ranging from 9 days to 2 weeks, depending on the ports of origin and destination.

In the aftermath of the war in Gaza, the tensions have spilled over to the realm of merchant shipping in the Red Sea. Escalation mounted on Saturday when both Britain and the United States announced that their militaries successfully intercepted and destroyed several drones.

The Houthis, which controls a significant portion of northern Yemen, have carried out a series of drone and missile attacks on ships that they assert are affiliated with Israel.

France’s Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna said the Houthi attacks against shipping vessels in the Red Sea “cannot go unanswered” as she made a visit to Israeli on Sunday.



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