4 Iranian arms shipments to Yemen intercepted

Four weapons shipments from Iran to Yemen have been intercepted by the US Navy and allied nations since April 2015, AFP reported Thursday (October 27th).

The US and Saudi Arabia have accused Iran of arming the Houthis (Ansarallah) , and while the Iranian regime denies the charges, the coalition has since enforced maritime and air controls over Yemen.

"Either US ships or coalition ships... intercepted four weapons shipments from Iran to Yemen," said US Vice Admiral Kevin Donegan.

"We know they came from Iran and we know the destination," he said.

Donegal said the shipments contained thousands of AK-47 assault rifles, anti-tank missiles, sniper rifles and "other pieces of other equipment, higher-end weapons systems".

Naval officials were able to determine the boats' destination by analysing GPS settings and interviewing the crew.

One of the shipments has been validated by the UN as being an illegal weapons shipment, he said.

Given the heavy volume of traffic around the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf, Donegan said "plenty" of other shipments would have gone through to Yemen.

The arms seizures came after Iran in April 2015 tried to send a convoy of seven ships, guarded by two Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) vessels, to Yemen.

Donegan said these were filled with coastal-defence cruise missiles, explosives and other weapons.

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