In another statement posted on Facebook, the authority states: “The highlighted losses incurred by the S.C authority due to the incident of the grounding crisis of Ever Given that can be seen is the damage to a number of participating marine units and the sinking of one of SCA marine units during the salvage operations, resulting in the death of one of the participants.”
It is unclear who died and how exactly this reported death occurred. There is also no record of a tugboat or marine unit sinking during the operation.
Insider has reached out to the SCA for more information but did not hear back in time for publication.
The Japanese-owned Ever Given container ship made headlines in March after it ran aground in the single-lane stretch during a sandstorm, blocking the Suez Canal for six days and significantly disrupting global trade.
Lawyers acting on behalf of the Japanese company Shoei Kisen Kaisha, which owns the ship, have said the SCA was at fault for Ever Given’s grounding because they allowed it to enter the canal amid poor weather conditions.
New analysis of the remains found more than 100 lesions that had been previously undocumented, some of which showed signs of healing. The remains of sixteen people had both healed and unhealed lesions, the scientists found.
This suggests that these deaths came after a series of raids, skirmishes, and ambushes spread months or years apart, rather than a singular battle.
“That is also a war. It’s just not the concept of war that we have now,” Crevecoeur said.
A war caused by climate change?
One of the most likely hypothesis is that tensions arose as a consequence of extreme weather changes.
The area went from a very arid climate to very moist climate between the end the glacial period, around 20,000 years ago, to the beginning of the African humid period, about 15,000 years ago, Crevecoeur said.
“The transition between both extreme was not gradual. Severe flooding of the Nile are recorded during this period that seems to stabilized only after 11,000 years ago,” she said.
This caused humans to concentrate in what must have been a refuge area at that time, causing competition for resources, a press release accompanying the study said.
Cultural tensions might have also played a part, as previous studies had also shown that humans at that time probably had a sense of group identity, she said.
“If you add cultural identity to climate pressure and maybe stresses to access to basic resources, you really have the roots to generate conflict between the community,” Crevecoeur said.
The scientists also found that male and female remains were evenly affected by the lesions, which Crevecoeur said was a surprise.
“In most ethnoarchaeological examples of similar type of conflict, the number of male individuals exhibiting trauma is always significantly higher than women,” she said.
The only difference is that most of the women had more fractures to the forearm, while men had more fractures on their hands.
“This is the kind of injury that you have in close combat, and these differences may reflect instinctive reaction in these situation when men will maybe more prone to engage the attacker when women might try to protect themselves,” Crevecoeur said.
Egyptian authorities said this week they plan on widening and deepening parts of the Suez Canal to avoid a repeat of the Ever Given blunder in March, according to Bloomberg.
In a televised address on Tuesday, the head of the Suez Canal Authority (SCA), Osama Rabie, said an 18.6 mile stretch of the waterway would be widened by about 131 feet (40 meters) and deepened by 32 feet (10 meters) to improve the movement of ships in the area.
The expansion will take around two years, Rabie said.
Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, who also spoke at the event, stressed he doesn’t want to mobilize “huge” public funding for the project, according to Bloomberg.
Marzena Ozarek-Szilke, an anthropologist and archaeologist of the University of Warsaw, told the Associated Press that she was “surprised” when she saw scans suggested that the body had breasts and no penis.
“When we saw the little foot and then the little hand [of the fetus], we were really shocked,” she said.
On the banks of the Nile River, 300 miles south of Cairo, sits the city of Luxor. It’s adjacent to Egypt’s Valley of the Kings, where archaeologists discovered King Tutankhamen’s tomb a century ago.
Somewhere nearby, King Tut should have a mortuary temple, where priests and relatives left gifts and tribute for the pharaoh to enjoy in the afterlife. But it was never found.
In September, archaeologist Zahi Hawass, the former Egyptian minister of antiquities, set out to find it.
Hawass’ team began searching an area of Luxor where Tut’s successors, Ay and Horemheb, built their mortuary temples. But instead of Tut’s temple, they uncovered an enormous, well-preserved metropolis.
Within weeks of the start of their dig, Hawass’ team uncovered mud bricks stamped with Pharaoh Amenhotep III’s name. That helped them estimate the city was built 3,400 years ago, since Amenhotep III ruled between 1391 BC and 1353 BC.
“I called the city ‘the golden city’ because it was built during the golden age of Egypt,” Hawass told Insider.
Amenhotep III was King Tut’s grandfather, and “the wealthiest Pharaoh who ever lived,” according to Betsy Bryan, an Egyptologist from Johns Hopkins University.
Amenhotep III ruled during a time of peace, which helped him amass unprecedented wealth, Bryan told Insider.
“He was never at war. All he did was sit back and count money for 40 years, so he built constantly,” she said.
Archaeologists knew the Pharaoh had funneled some of his riches into building a city in this area of Egypt: “This is a place we knew existed,” Bryan said. But its precise location had eluded diggers for almost a century.
“Many foreign missions searched for this city and never found it,” Hawass said in a press release, adding it may be the largest ancient city ever found in Egypt.
In 1934 and 1935, a French excavation team searched Luxor for the “lost golden city” but came up empty, Hawass said.
That effort failed because the French archaeologists had been looking in the wrong place, Hawass added. Figuring the city would be clustered around buildings dedicated to the Pharaoh who built it, the group searched next to the Collosi of Memnon: twin statues that depicted Amenhotep III. The Pharaoh’s mortuary temple was nearby as well — but they had no luck finding the city.
“It never occurred to them to look slightly south,” Bryan said.
The lost city, it turns out, was located to the south and west of Amenhotep III’s mortuary temple.
So far, Hawass’ team has uncovered remnants of the city in an area that’s at least half a square mile.
But the city is likely far larger, Bryan said, stretching all the way to the Pharaoh’s palace at Malkata, which is almost 2 miles south of the Colossi of Memnon.
In addition to the city’s size, Hawass said, “the huge amount of artifacts” his team uncovered there makes this an unprecedented archaeological find.
“It will give us a rare glimpse into the life of the ancient Egyptians at the time where the empire was at its wealthiest,” he said in a press release.
The city’s streets are flanked with buildings, some of which have walls 9 feet tall.
Scattered throughout those structures, Hawass’ team found rooms filled with pottery, glass, metalwork, and weaving tools. Ancient Egyptians once used these objects in their day-to-day lives, but the tools had lain untouched for millennia.
Hawass’ excavation team also found a large cemetery north of the city.
They haven’t figured out how big the cemetery is yet, but the team discovered a cluster of underground tombs with stairs leading to each tomb entrance.
In one part of the cemetery, the diggers found a grave holding a skeleton with a rope wrapped around its knees.
Hawass is still investigating why the body was buried in this manner.
The city seems to be divided into industrial and residential areas. In the south, archaeologists found an ancient bakery with a cooking and meal-preparation area, ovens, and pottery used for storing food.
Another neighborhood had multiple workshops: one for producing mud bricks used to build temples, and another for producing amulets.
Another part of the city was all houses.
“For those of us interested in the people and how they did stuff, this place is a treasure trove,” Bryan said.
Nearby the cemetery, Hawass’ team found a piece of pottery containing 22 pounds of dried meat, likely from a butcher at a slaughterhouse.
The vessel had an inscription indicating that the meat was for a festival celebrating the continued rule of Amenhotep III.
The city dwellers were skilled craftsmen, Bryan said – they made fancy ceramic vessels, glassware, and temple decorations in the name of Amenhotep III.
“It really is like peeking into the king’s private storage unit,” she said. “That kind of specialization was rarely seen anywhere.”
Hawass’ team also uncovered scarab-beetle amulets, rings, and wine caskets in the city.
According to Bryan, the city was Amenhotep III’s love letter to the god Aten.
“When ancient Egyptian kings built, they would dedicate their construction to a deity and associate themselves with that deity,” she said.
Aten was depicted as a sun disc. Archaeologists typically associated the deity with Amenhotep III’s son, Akhenaten, who worshipped Aten instead of the chief Egyptian god of the sun and air, Amon.
This discovery shows that Amenhotep III believed in Aten too, Hawass said — which explains why the Pharoah named the city “tehn Aten,” meaning the dazzling Aten.
After taking over from his father, Akhenaten – King Tut’s father – briefly lived in Aten. Then he moved 250 miles north to a city called Amarna, along with his people. That’s where King Tut was born.
Akhenaten’s exodus to Amarna could be why so many tools and artifacts were left behind in Aten.
“When you pick up and move, you’re not going to take the ceramics,” Bryan said.
According to Hawass, Akhenaten fled to Amarna and built that city to escape the priests of Amon, who were displeased that their Pharaoh was worshipping a different god than their own.
Akhenaten was branded a heretic. Following his death, King Tut’s family moved to Thebes, another city in the Luxor area that served as the ancient Egyptian capital.
It’s unclear whether Aten was ever reoccupied.
Hawass said there’s plenty more to find of the “lost golden city,” since only one-third of it has been uncovered so far.
“We still think that the city has an extension to the west and to the north, and that is our goal by next September,” Hawass said.
“Customers are asking when their boxes will be delivered after the ship seizure, and the prospect of moving the containers to other ships and delivering them to the clients in Europe is now on the table,” an unnamed source, directly involved in the matter, told the Wall Street Journal.
“It won’t be easy to do, but there are a number of options,” the same source told Wall Street Journal. “Empty ships can be deployed to pick up boxes and some can be loaded to other container ships crossing on the same route to Europe.”
The move could also create additional legal headaches, relating mainly to claims and fees surrounding the vessel and its cargo customers.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Evergreen Marine Corp. said in a statement that it is looking into the Egyptian court order “and studying the possibility of the vessel and the cargo on board being treated separately.”
Shoei Kisen Kaisha, the ship’s owner, earlier this month filed a general-average claim against the vessel’s operators, which calls for companies with cargo on the vessel to share the risk and costs involved in the ship’s recovery.
Two maritime lawyers, Bruce Paulsen and Brian Maloney of Seward & Kissel told the Maritime Executive this week: “The seizure of the Ever Given and compensation demand for salvage and other expenses by Egypt’s canal authority escalates the complexity and cost for the numerous cargo owners with property in transit aboard the vessel.”
“Barring a settlement, those cargo owners now face additional expense and delay while the vessel’s arrest is maintained,” they added.
Rabie said that its investigation into who was at fault for the grounding will be concluded Thursday, the Guardian reported. He denied any culpability on the SCA’s part, and said that “of course” the ship’s owner was at fault, the paper reported.
The ship’s technical managers, Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM), said in a statement that it found the SCA’s decision to impound the Ever Given “extremely disappointing,” citing the cooperation it had offered the authority in investigating the cause of the grounding.
In early April, Shoei Kisen Kaisha filed a “general average” claim, which would share any costs between the ship’s insurers and the owners of its cargo.
General average is a principle of maritime law that means risk for damages is shared between the ship’s customers.
“The vessel will remain here until investigations are complete and compensation is paid,” Lt. Gen. Osama Rabie, who leads the Suez Canal Authority, told a local news station on Thursday, according to the Wall Street Journal.
“We hope for a speedy agreement,” he said, adding that the “minute they agree to compensation, the vessel will be allowed to move.”
It is also still unclear who will pay for Egypt’s demand for compensation. Shoei Kisen Kaisha Ltd., the Japanese owner of the Ever Given, told the Wall Street Journal that it hadn’t officially heard from the Egyptian authorities.
Eric Hsieh, the president of Evergreen Marine Corp, the charterer of Ever Given, said that the company is “free of responsibility from cargo delays” because “it will be covered by insurance,” Bloomberg reported.
The 1,300-foot Ever Given made headlines on March 23 when an unexpected wind storm caused it to steer off course and get lodged in the sandbanks of the Suez Canal, disrupting global trade. It was freed six days later.
The ship, its cargo, and the 25-person Indian crew of sailors will remain at anchor in Egypt’s Great Bitter Lake until the investigation is over. Earlier this month, authorities told Insider that the crew of the ship is safe and will continue getting paid.
Rabie said that he would prefer to settle the matter of compensation outside of court, although he didn’t rule out a lawsuit.
“We could agree on a certain compensation, or it goes to court,” he said, according to CNBC. “If they decide to go to court, then the ship should be held.”
Archaeologists have discovered what is believed to be the largest ancient city ever found in Egypt, hailing the discovery as one of the most important finds since Tutankhamun’s tomb.
Dubbed “the lost golden city” by Egyptologist Dr. Zahi Hawass, the site was unearthed near Luxor, home of the Valley of the Kings, which lies 300 miles south of Cairo, the capital of Egypt. The city was known as the Rise of Aten, the archaeology team said.
As reported by the Guardian, the team said in a statement: “The Egyptian mission under Dr Zahi Hawass found the city that was lost under the sands. The city is 3,000 years old, dates to the reign of Amenhotep III, and continued to be used by Tutankhamun and Ay.”
The archaeologists also said that Betsy Bryan, Professor of Egyptian art and archaeology at Johns Hopkins University, hailed the find as the “second most important archeological discovery since the tomb of Tutankhamun.”
The team said that the city has been “untouched for thousands of years, left by the ancient residents as if it were yesterday.”
The team began excavations last year in September, beginning between the temples of Ramses III and Amenhotep III. Hawass said that many “foreign missions” have searched for this ancient city before, but had been unsuccessful.
After seven months of excavations and searching, the team unearthed the city and have so far found several neighborhoods, with 10 feet high walls that are still intact. They even found a bakery that has ovens and storage pottery.
“Within weeks, to the team’s great surprise, formations of mud bricks began to appear in all directions,” the team’s statement read of the unearthing.
“What they unearthed was the site of a large city in a good condition of preservation, with almost complete walls, and with rooms filled with tools of daily life.”
Other valuable ancient items have been discovered in the city, too, including jewelry, pottery, scarab beetle amulets, and mud bricks with the seals of Amenhotep III.
Known as Amenhotep the Magnificent, he was the ninth Pharoah of the 18th dynasty, and his reign was known as a time of splendor, style, and riches wherein Egypt reached new levels of artistry and international power.
This could just be the surface of further finds, according to the team, who also discovered a collection of tombs via “stairs carved into the rock.”
“The mission expects to uncover untouched tombs filled with treasures,” the team’s statement read.
Meanwhile, Bryan hopes that the city will “give us a rare glimpse into the life of the Ancient Egyptians at the time where the empire was at his wealthiest.”