The Fifth Fleet of the United States Navy reported on Wednesday that it seized well over 1,000 rifles and nearly a quarter of a million rounds of ammunition from a ship in the Arabian Sea; Officials believe the ship was of Iranian origin, making its way to Yemen to deliver weapons illegally.
This week, a ship was stopped by the US Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT) in the Arabian Sea, followed by the seizure of over 1,000 weapons and 200,000 rounds of ammunition. According to reports, the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet arrived on the scene. In addition to seizing the weapons, five crew members were also detained, who claimed Yemeni nationality.
After boarding the ship, the crew uncovered over 1,400 AK-47 rifles, in addition to over 226,600 rounds of ammunition. Though the Navy reported that the vessel was a “stateless fishing vessel,” evidence pointed to its origin being found nowhere other than the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The Navy reported, “The stateless vessel was assessed to have originated in Iran and transited international waters along a route historically used to traffic weapons unlawfully to the Houthis in Yemen.” The US also said, “The direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer of weapons to the Houthis violates UN Security Council Resolutions and US sanctions.”
According to at least one source, the Fifth Fleet has now seized close to 9,000 illegal weapons in 2021. After dealing with the scenario, the ship was sunk to prevent more issues for commercial shipping.
The Yemeni Civil War began in 2014 between the Houthi Rebels and the internationally-recognized government of Yemen, with the former being armed and financed by the world’s number one sponsor of terror, Iran. The war remains the world’s number one humanitarian disaster.