Third illegal arms haul in the Arabian Sea

The U.S. Navy intercepted on March 28 a dhow carrying a large amount of weapons which the United States estimate to have originated in Iran and was likely bound for Iran.

The Coastal Patrol ship USS Sirocco, operating as part of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, intercepted and seized the shipment of weapons hidden aboard a small, stateless dhow.

The illicit cargo included 1,500 AK-47s, 200 RPG launchers and 21 .50 caliber machine guns.

This is the third interception of illicit arms in the Arabian Sea in roughly a month’s time.

Royal Australian Navy’s HMAS Darwin was the first to detect weapon smugglers when the ship on February 27 confiscated nearly 2,000 AK-47 assault rifles, 100 rocket-propelled grenade launchers, 49 PKM general purpose machine guns, 39 PKM spare barrels and 20 60mm mortar tubes from a dhow.

More recently, the French Navy destroyer FS Provence seized almost 2,000 AK-47 assault rifles, 64 Dragunov sniper rifles, nine anti-tank missiles and other associated equipment.