PDA

View Full Version : Israel says seized big Hezbollah-bound arms ship


Super Spy
11-04-2009, 3:53 PM
Talk about smuggling guns......looks like someone had an evil plan.....interesting that they found the hidden cache when the shipping company claims no knowledge....somebody knew something....

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20091104/wl_nm/us_israel_ship



JERUSALEM (Reuters) Israeli naval commandos seized a ship carrying hundreds of tons of Iranian-supplied arms, including rockets that can hit Israeli cities, to Lebanon's Hezbollah group, Israeli officials said on Wednesday.

Commodore Ran Ben-Yehuda, speaking as the search of the Antigua-flagged Francop was under way in Israel's Mediterranean port of Ashdod, said the weapons were found behind civilian goods in at least 40 shipping containers.

The shipment, he said, was enough to keep Iranian-backed Hezbollah, which fired some 4,000 rockets into Israel during a 34-day war in 2006, supplied for a month of fighting.

"The weapons came from Iran and were meant for Hezbollah," Ben-Yehuda told reporters at Ashdod port, where wooden crates of bullets, rocket-propelled grenades and variety of rockets which he said were unloaded from the ship filled a dock.

He said the containers were picked up by the Francop in the Egyptian port of Damietta and were to have reached Hezbollah in Lebanon via Syria.

Syria and Iran denied the Israeli allegations.

"It's 10 times the size of the cargo on the Karine-A," Ben-Yehuda said, referring to a freighter with 50 tons of arms that Israel seized in 2002. Israel said that vessel's cargo was supplied by Iran and destined for Palestinians in Gaza.

Israel believed Egypt and the vessel's crew were unaware weapons were being shipped on the Francop, Ben-Yehuda said.

He said naval commandos boarded the ship overnight without incident after receiving the captain's permission to inspect his cargo. The interception, the military said, was carried out in international waters about 100 miles from Israel.

Ben-Yehuda said Israeli intelligence constantly kept taps on suspected smuggling lanes.

HIDDEN

At Ashdod port, some of the crates on display were still wedged in containers behind white sacks of polyethelene in what the Israeli military said had been a bid to hide the weaponry.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement that weapons discovered on the vessel could have been used to attack Israeli cities.

But in public comments on the incident, Israeli leaders gave no hint they were contemplating military action against Hezbollah in response to the alleged weapons smuggling attempt. The Israeli-Lebanese frontier has been largely quiet since 2006.

A Cyprus-based shipping source told Reuters the ship had been due to call in Lebanon.

The 8,622 deadweight ton ship was due to have arrived on November 1 at Damietta and was last seen on October 31 in the Mediterranean sea between Lebanon and Cyprus, according to AISLive ship tracking data on Reuters.

The vessel is owned by German shipping company Reederei Gerd Bartels, based near the port of Hamburg. Asked to comment, Mirko Bartels of the private shipping firm told Reuters: "We have nothing to say."

An official with Cyprus-based United Feeder Services told Reuters it had acted as the time charterer and carrier for the Francop, charged with loading and discharging the vessel.

"The vessel sailed from Damietta, and was bound for Limassol, Cyprus and then Lebanon, Turkey and back to Damietta," the official, who declined to be named, said.

"We are not allowed to open up containers to see what is inside," he said. "We do not have much information. We just know that the vessel was seized and was forced to go to Ashdod to check the cargo."

(Additional reporting by Ari Rabinovitch and Dan Williams in Jerusalem, Jonathan Saul in London and Michael Hogan in Hamburg, Editing by Richard Williams)

audihenry
11-04-2009, 5:57 PM
Israel is only claiming it went to Hezbollah and that it was signed off by Iran, but we have no way of knowing that. They have been known to exaggerate in the past.

Fjold
11-04-2009, 6:34 PM
They should give all the rockets to Hezbollah. Just point them toward Lebanon and fire them off.

bigstick61
11-04-2009, 6:48 PM
Israel is only claiming it went to Hezbollah and that it was signed off by Iran, but we have no way of knowing that. They have been known to exaggerate in the past.

It's actually the normal way Hezbollah and Iran go about business. Not surprising at all. They just got caught this time. Iran's been supplying and providing military advisors to Hezbollah for years.

Chatterbox
11-04-2009, 7:29 PM
This is great of us! Why, you might ask? Well, last time Israelis busted a freighter full of weapons for the Fatah, they ended up selling the ammo and other stuff to US (I think the FA stuff was converted into kits).

dwa
11-04-2009, 8:05 PM
obviously those rockets are from the US and our lax gun laws

Josh3239
11-04-2009, 11:15 PM
Iran's been supplying and providing military advisors to Hezbollah for years.

Iran has been supplying, arming, paying, and/or advising anyone who wants to kill Jews or Americans for a long time. They are still finding weapons in Iraq that are only made in Iran.

audihenry
11-05-2009, 12:45 AM
Iran has been supplying, arming, paying, and/or advising anyone who wants to kill Jews or Americans for a long time. They are still finding weapons in Iraq that are only made in Iran.

And the U.S. has been supplying, arming, paying, and/or advising anyone willing to give it support/access/bases/political bj, etc.

k1dude
11-05-2009, 12:58 AM
And the U.S. has been supplying, arming, paying, and/or advising anyone willing to give it support/access/bases/political bj, etc.

So you side with those that target civilians in your moral vacuum?

greasemonkey
11-05-2009, 8:07 AM
And the U.S. has been supplying, arming, paying, and/or advising anyone willing to give it support/access/bases/political bj, etc.

Yeah, we're compensating allies for assisting us in going after successful mass murdering dictators who openly want to murder everyone outside of their race/religion/tribe or whatever, how rude of us.
:rolleyes:


Israel is only claiming it went to Hezbollah and that it was signed off by Iran, but we have no way of knowing that. They have been known to exaggerate in the past.

Syria and Iran denied the Israeli allegations.

There's all the evidence, clearly just another exaggeration. Haha, no, I think the Israelies are "probably" capable of tracking a ship/containers and questioning the right people.

This is a drop in the bucket of support that Iran's funneled to Hezbollah, nothing new and yet still alarming.

greasemonkey
11-05-2009, 8:11 AM
obviously those rockets are from the US and our lax gun laws

Little did we know, DeLeon was trying to help save the global community from rockets with ab962, as well. :rolleyes:

510shooter510
11-05-2009, 8:16 AM
Hey, maybe these weapons and rockets should be made CA legal. They would be so backordered that terrorists would never get them. Give them a 10 day wait while your at it lol.