Ballast released to refloat Suez Canal ship

Egyptian officials say they will make another attempt on Sunday to refloat the giant container ship that is blocking the Suez Canal as they have drained ballast water from the vessel.

The Suez Canal Authority told a news conference on Saturday that it had drained 9,000 tons of water from the bottom of the ship to make it easier to move.

The authority plans to try to move the vessel at full tide.

The Ever Given, owned by Japanese company Shoei Kisen and operated by Taiwan's Evergreen Marine Corp., ran aground on Tuesday, blocking the key maritime route connecting Asia and Europe.

More than 300 ships are waiting to pass through the canal.

The authority did not say when the Ever Given will be freed, adding that if there is no progress, the cargo may be unloaded to reduce the vessel's weight.

A Dutch salvage company that supports the dislodging work says the ship is carrying more than 10,000 containers, and about 600 near the bow may be removed.