U.S. 5th Fleet seizes weapons shipment from stateless dhow in Arabian Sea


FILE PHOTO: U.S. Navy guided-missile cruiser USS Monterey (CG-61) sails in the Bosphorus, on its way to the Black Sea, in Istanbul, Turkey March 19, 2021. REUTERS/Murad Sezer

CAIRO (Reuters) - The U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet said on Saturday that the guided-missile cruiser USS Monterey (CG 61) seized an illicit shipment of weapons from a stateless dhow in international water of the North Arabian Sea on May 6-7.

"The cache of weapons included dozens of advanced Russian-made anti-tank guided missiles, thousands of Chinese Type 56 assault rifles, and hundreds of PKM machine guns, sniper rifles and rocket-propelled grenades launchers. Other weapon components included advanced optical sights," the Bahrain-based Fleet said in a statement.

It added that the materiel is in U.S. custody awaiting final disposition, while the original source and intended destination of the materiel is under investigation.

"After all illicit cargo was removed, the dhow was assessed for seaworthiness, and after questioning, its crew was provided food and water before being released," the statement said.

(Reporting by Nayera Abdallah; Editing by Dan Grebler)

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