British Navy seizes smuggled Iranian missiles in the Gulf of Oman
The British Royal Navy (Royal Navy) seized last week. anti-tank missiles Iranian-origin anti-tank missiles on a small vessel in the Gulf of Oman that was allegedly headed for Yemen, the U.S. Fifth Fleet said Thursday.
“Coordinated efforts between U.S. and U.K. maritime forces led the Royal Navy frigate HMS Lancaster (F229) to confiscate anti-tank guided missiles. and missile components from a small vessel from Iran,” according to a U.S. statement.
The release added that they also found on the vessel “components from ballistic missiles medium-range ballistic missiles.
It is the seventh operation against illegal weapons or drugs conducted over the past three months in the Gulf of Oman, said Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces.
In this time period they have seized more than 5,000 weapons, 1.6 million rounds of ammunition, 7,000 proximity fuses for rockets, 2,100 kilograms of propellant used to launch rocket-propelled grenades, 30 anti-tank guided missiles, medium-range ballistic missile components and illegal drugs worth $80 million, according to the Fifth Fleet.
This interdiction occurs over the course of a route historically used for illicit arms trafficking to Yemen.
In Yemen, the Shiite Houthi rebels, backed by Tehran, initiated a civil conflict against the forces of the internationally recognized government in 2014, and the following year it was escalated by the intervention of the Saudi-led military coalition.
Both British and U.S. maritime forces have headquartered in Manamathe capital of Bahrain