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1/27 UPDATE5:30 p.m.:After undergoing an unexpected repair, the CapeRay is set to leave at 6 p.m.

1/27 UPDATE: The Cape Ray is set to leave the yard at 1 p.m., the Navy announced Monday.

1/13 UPDATE: The Cape Ray left the shipyard on January 10 to conduct its final sea trials in preparation for its upcoming mission to destroy Syrian chemical weapons, Army Col. Steve Warren, a Pentagon spokesman, said Monday.
The ship is expected to return Tuesday for final outfitting before deploying to an as-yet undisclosed location in the Mediterranean Sea sometime late this week or early next week.

PORTSMOUTH (AP) A cargo ship is being outfitted in Virginia with sophisticated technology capable of destroying Syria's chemical weapons.

The 648-foot MV Cape Ray is undergoing work in a Portsmouth shipyard before sea trials and its expected voyage to the Mediterranean. The vessel in the Maritime Administration's ready reserve is rolling out the gangplank Thursday for media visits.

A key shipboard addition is a high-tech system that can neutralize lethal chemical weapons such as nerve gas with water and bleaching compounds. It could treat more than two dozen metric tons of chemicals daily in international waters.

The confirmed use of chemical weapons last August in a suburb of Damascus, Syria, killed 1,400 people, according to the U.S. government. That led to a U.S.-Russian agreement for eliminating Syria's chemical weapons.

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