Engine of grain ship bound for Ukraine breaks down in Bosphorus, second incident this week

The Briza’s engine failed around 23:30 GMT on Friday and it anchored near Istanbul’s Kandilli area, Tribeca Shipping said. The ship weighed anchor at 0120 GMT on Saturday and was to head for an anchorage area in the southern Bosphorus aboard tugboats, it said.

Traffic in the Bosphorus was halted and southbound traffic was expected to continue at 05:30 GMT, Tribeca added. Data from Refinitiv Eikon showed the Briza anchored south of the Bosphorus at 06:28 GMT.

Lady Zehma, a freighter carrying more than 3,000 tonnes of maize from Ukraine, was towed to anchorage in Istanbul after briefly running aground due to rudder failure on Thursday night.

Such incidents are rare on the scenic Bosphorus, which divides Turkey’s largest city and connects the Black Sea to the Sea of ​​Marmara and beyond to the Mediterranean.

The Istanbul-based Joint Coordination Center (JCC) – which oversees the deal and includes officials from the United Nations, Russia, Ukraine and Turkey – said on Friday the Briza had been inspected and cleared to sail to Ukraine with seven other ships.

As of Friday, some 1.77 million tonnes of grain and other foodstuffs had been exported from Ukraine under the deal, while 160 inbound and outbound trips were allowed, the JCC said.

Ukraine’s grain exports fell after Russia invaded the country on February 24 and blocked its Black Sea ports, pushing up global food prices and raising fears of shortages in Africa and the Middle East.

Three ports have been unblocked under the agreement signed on July 22 by Moscow and Kyiv, and negotiated by the UN and Ankara.

(Reporting by Can Sezer and Ali Kucukgocmen; Editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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