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U.S. Navy announces seizure of over 2k assault rifles hidden on wooden boat bound for Yemen

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The United States Navy announced this weekend that it had seized over 2,000 weapons of war from a wooden boat bound for Yemen in the Arabian Sea on January 6, and believes the weapons were being sent to Houthi rebels.

According to the Navy, its guided missile cruiser, the USS Monterey, discovered the wooden sailing ship and approached the vessel. US Navy personnel boarded the boat and found the arms hidden below deck wrapped in green plastic.

In total, 2,116 rifles were found, along with dozens of sniper rifles, machine guns, and missiles. 

The US sailors interviewed the six crew members on board and determined the vessel had indeed come from Iran, pointing to ongoing shipments of arms to Yemen’s Houthi rebels in spite of a United Nations weapons embargo that has been in effect since February 2022. None of the crew members were detained after questioning. 

The Islamic Republic has been caught several times providing the Houthi rebels with arms since the bloody war in Yemen began in 2014.

In 2021 the Navy intercepted a similar weapons shipment on a boat in the North Arabian Sea. The USS Monterey was involved in that seizure as well. The Navy has not shared the specific evidence that led to the conclusion that that arms were bound for the Houthis, but a Navy spokesperson said in a statement to the Associated Press that there is sufficient proof.

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