ANKARA (AA) – US naval forces intercepted a fishing vessel in the Gulf of Oman while “smuggling assault rifles from Iran to Yemen,” the US 5th Fleet said in a statement.
According to the statement, the boat was seized on Jan. 6 while carrying 2,116 AK-47 assault rifles.
“The intercepted vessel, which was sailing on a route historically used to traffic illicit cargo to the Houthis in Yemen, was crewed by six Yemeni nationals,” it said.
“This shipment is part of a continued pattern of destabilizing activity from Iran,” Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of US Naval Forces Central Command, US 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces, said in the statement.
“These threats have our attention. We remain vigilant in detecting any maritime activity that impedes freedom of navigation or compromises regional security,” he added.
Yemen has been engulfed by violence since 2014, when Iranian-aligned Houthi rebels captured much of the country, including the capital Sanaa.