Ship carrying Ukrainian corn briefly stranded in Istanbul

ISTANBUL (AP) — A cargo ship carrying tons of grain from Ukraine was stranded in Istanbul’s Bosporus and had to be rescued early Friday.

Turkey’s Directorate General of Coastal Safety tweeted that the 173-meter cargo ship was stuck off the coast of the scenic Bebek neighborhood late Thursday because of a rudder malfunction. The busy strait was closed to traffic for the rescue by coastal safety boats. The Panama-flagged Lady Zehma was towed and the strait re-opened.

The cargo ship had departed the Ukrainian port of Chornomorsk under the deal brokered by the United Nations that allows the safe shipment of Ukrainian grain. It’s the first reported incident of malfunction since grain shipments restarted last month.

On Aug. 29, the Joint Coordination Center in Istanbul — which monitors the ships under the grain deal and is composed of Turkish, Russian, Ukrainian and U.N. officials — authorized the movement of Lady Zehma with 3,000 metric tons of corn to Ravenna, Italy. The ship is currently anchored in the Marmara Sea off the coast of Istanbul.

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