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Another cargo ship refloated after briefly blocking Suez Canal

A Panama-flagged ship briefly blocked the Suez Canal on Thursday before being successfully refloated, roughly six months after another ship blocked the crucial waterway for nearly a week.

As the Saudi news organization Al Arabiya reported, the Coral Crystal container ship was refloated shortly after it ran aground in the canal, reportedly blocking four ships from entering.

Adm. Ossama Rabiee, managing director of the Suez Canal Authority (SCA), released a statement on Thursday assuring interested parties that traffic through the canal remained uninterrupted, allowing 61 vessels to travel through both directions.

"[Rabiee] reassured every one of the regularity of traffic through the Canal at the normal rates of transit stressing the fact that the SCA has sufficient navigational and technical safety capabilities as well as the infrastructure required to deal with emergencies," the SCA said.

"The incident was resolved in a professional manner through the aid of SCA tug boats, and the ship resumed its transit through the Canal. Traffic was not negatively impacted in any way since it was directed to the eastern branch of Al-Ballah bypass," the state-owned trade authority added. Al Arabiya noted that the SCA has said it's planning a multibillion-dollar project to widen portions of the canal in order to prevent incidents like this from happening in the future.

Earlier this year, the Ever Given cargo ship ran aground in the Suez Canal, disrupting global trade for about six days before successfully being dislodged. Shortly after it was freed, the Egyptian government seized the vessel until a settlement with the ship's owner and insurer could be made.

About three months after the incident, the Ever Given's insurance company announced that a settlement had been reached, though it did not disclose the financial terms of the agreement. The SCA had previously demanded half a billion dollars in compensation, having lowered its demands from an initial $900 million.

This article originally appeared on The Hill

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