Iranian Weapons Bound for Yemen Seized by US Forces

Iranian Weapons Bound for Yemen Seized by US Forces

( – The United States Navy seized a large shipment of weapons that Iran was attempting to send to Yemen, potentially intended for Houthi forces.

Navy officials believe it is only the first of what will likely become many seizures. It marks the first time the US military has intercepted weapons bound for Yemen since Houthi rebels began attacking ships in November. A coordinated effort of Navy SEALs, drones, and helicopter teams executed the operation. It was also the first US seizure of Iranian missile weapons and parts since November 2019.

Officials described the cargo as “advanced lethal aid” and said it would likely be used in future attacks against commercial ships. A variety of missiles were included. They said attempting to transport the armaments violated international law and UN Security Resolution 2216.

Two US Navy SEALs went missing during the mission on January 11th. One lost his group while climbing a ladder during rough seas. The other attempted to rescue him. They have yet to be recovered. A search-and-rescue mission remains underway. Officials said the region’s seas tend to be more chaotic during the early period of the year.

The dhow vessel that was used to transport the munitions was sunk intentionally by military officials after it was deemed unsafe. Several containers of suspicious substances were found in holds throughout the ship. They haven’t yet determined what to do with the vessel’s crew but said they would face charges consistent with international laws.

Dhow vessels are smaller boats that are typically used in the region for commercial fishing and light shipments. However, they have also become a popular choice for smugglers in recent years.

Officials called out Iran for continuing to sow instability in the region at a time when it’s already dangerously unstable. There are growing concerns of a full-scale conflict in the Middle East. They believe that such a war could have devastating conflicts both in the region and across the globe.

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