- Middle East/North Africa
Suez Canal Authority President Diaa Mamish boarded a French container ship to reassure its crew and that of other ships of the canal’s security.
“We have normal traffic,” Mamish said in a statement Sunday. “We have 44 ships crossing from both directions, with a total cargo of 2.8 million tons.”
“The Armed Forces are securing the canal well,” he said.
Military troops had been deployed in Suez and Port Said to secure the deteriorating situation in the two cities. The military also sent reinforcements to the canal authority’s headquarters in Ismailia. All three cities run along the canal, a vital international trade route and major source of revenue for the country.
Clashes in Suez and Ismailia started after the 25 January revolution anniversary in protest of the Muslim Brotherhood. In Port Said, violence broke out Saturday after a court convicted 21 defendants of involvement in last year’s Port Said football violence, and recommended the death penalty.