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US Navy nabs Iranian missile shipment to Houthis in Arabian Sea

The United States military said Thursday it had seized an Iranian weapons shipment on a small sailing vessel in the Arabian Sea that was bound for Houthi rebels in Yemen.

The weapons showed signs of Iranian “design and manufacture,” according to a Reuters report.

They included 150 anti-tank guided missiles as well as three surface-to-air missiles.

According to the US Navy, sailors from the USS Normandy, a missile cruiser, boarded a dhow bound for Yemen in the Arabian Sea and discovered “150 ‘Dehlavieh’ anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM), which are Iranian-manufactured copies of Russian Kornet ATGMs.

“Other weapons components seized aboard the dhow were of Iranian design and manufacture and included three Iranian surface-to-air missiles,” the statement said.

The weapons were “identical” to those seized in a similar operation last November by the USS Forrest Sherman.

The Houthi rebels in Yemen have maintained close ties to Iran, which has provided them with weapons, training and financial support.

The US has consistently accused Iran of illegally smuggling arms to the Houthis, and has seized numerous weapons shipments in transit in recent months.

Iranian weapons smuggling into Yemen violates two UN Security Council resolutions, one that prohibits Iran from shipping weapons outside its border, and another that prohibits supplying weapons to the Houthis amid Yemen’s prolonged and bloody civil war.

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