Last month, Marwa Elselehdar noticed something strange. News had broken about a huge container ship, the Ever Given, that had become wedged across the Suez Canal, bringing one of world's major shipping routes to a halt. At the time of the Suez blockage, she was working as a first mate, in command of the Aida IV, hundreds of miles away in Alexandria. The vessel, owned by Egypt's maritime safety authority, runs supply missions to a lighthouse in the Red Sea.
Marwa Elselehdar: 'I was blamed for blocking the Suez Canal'
Egypt's first female ship captain says she was falsely blamed for Suez crisis | The Times of Israel
Marwa Elselehdar said soon after news broke that the Ever Given had blocked the canal on March 24, she noticed online rumors saying she was responsible. She was hundreds of miles away at the time, commanding a ship called the Aida IV in the city of Alexandria. The online rumors were propelled by a doctored image of a news headline headline that said she was involved in the Suez accident. The fake image, purportedly from the Arab News outlet, appears to be from an actual story about Elselehdar from March 22 that was unrelated to Suez. Elselehdar said she was always drawn to the sea and had been spurred toward a career on the water after he brother began studies at the Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport, a regional university. She is currently ranked as a first mate and is set to take a final exam to gain the full rank of captain next month.
We asked kids what they would do to free the ship in the Suez Canal
Marwa Elselehdar, who was working as a first mate in command on a ship hundreds of miles away in Alexandria at the time of the blockage, told the BBC rumours have circulated online saying she was to blame. After a huge operation, the ship was finally dislodged last week and the backlog of ships was cleared. Read: 'Kill the Bill' protesters block traffic by sitting down on motorway as dozens arrested across UK. But not before Elselehdar found herself at the centre of an online conspiracy that she was the cause, according to the BBC.
If not, some quick catch-up: a container ship called the Ever Given , which is bigger than the Empire State Building, got stuck sideways in the Suez Canal on Tuesday. A Dutch company working to wiggle the boat free has compared the vessel to a "beached whale" and said it "might take weeks" to accomplish, according to Reuters. So, global trade disaster for sure , but on the bright side, it's inspired some seriously top-notch memes. Is your child texting about the Suez Canal boat? Some of the good folks of the internet have kindly offered their suggestions for how to free the boat.