The al-Arabyia news agency corroborated the report, saying that Mohab Mamish, the recently appointed chairman of the Suez Canal Authority and former Egyptian Navy commander, said that the action was refused because the canal is too narrow for military action.
The request was made by the U.S. recently. The news outlets say that the Suez Canal authority is notified 24 hours in advance of a ship’s passage through the canal allowing for time to verify the ships identity.
Mamish told the Egypt Independent that his main goal is to secure the canal and the vessels passing through it.
The Suez Canal is a vital waterway connecting the Mediterranean Sea with the Red Sea, a passage way considered to be the shortest link between the east and west making it vital to global trade.
In response to tightening sanctions, Iran has made several threats to shut down the canal, prompting the U.S. to promise military action should any attempt to close the canal be made.