Suez Canal Authority carries out repairs to missile-hit vessel

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Egypt’s Suez Canal Authority said on Monday it had conducted repair work on a missile-hit Greek dry-bulk carrier, highlighting its readiness to restore damaged ships passing through the Red Sea.

The Malta-flagged, Greek-owned vessel Zografia had berthed at a floating dock of the authority-affiliated Suez Shipyard Company for repairs after the ship’s hull and some components sustained external and internal damage in a Jan. 16 attack by Yemeni Houthi forces.

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The vessel was sailing from Vietnam to Israel with 24 crew on board and was empty of cargo when targeted.

“The Suez Canal Authority will spare no effort to provide all navigational and maritime services that ensure maintaining the normal flow of traffic through the canal and maintain the sustainability of global supply chains,” a statement by the canal authority said, quoting its head Osama Rabie.

It was not clear whether the repairs had been completed. The vessel was still anchored at the entrance to the Suez Canal from the Red Sea side on Monday, according to data from ship tracking and maritime analytics provider MarineTraffic.

The Iran-aligned Houthi group has threatened to expand the range of targets in the Red Sea, which it says are a response to Israel’s bombardment of Gaza, to include US ships in response to American and British strikes on its sites in Yemen.

Attacks by the Houthis on ships in the region since November have disrupted international trade and alarmed major powers.

Earlier this month, Rabie said that Suez Canal revenues had fallen by 40 percent and ship traffic by 30 percent year-on-year in the period between Jan. 1 and Jan. 11 due to Houthi attacks.

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