Last month, Marwa Elselehdar noticed something strange. Marwa Elselehdar: “I was blamed for blocking the Suez Canal”.
News had broken about a huge container ship, the Ever Given, that had become wedged across the Suez Canal. This brought one of world’s major shipping routes to a halt.
But as she checked her phone, online rumours were saying she was to blame.
“I was shocked,” says Ms Elselehdar, Egypt’s first female ship’s captain. Marwa Elselehdar: “I was blamed for blocking the Suez Canal”.
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. It’s also used to train cadets from the Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport (AASTMT), a regional university run by the Arab League.