The US Navy reported that it had to stop a vessel loaded with 40 tons of fertilizer that could be used to make explosives as it was being brought from Iran via a route earlier used for smuggling weapons to Yemeni rebels. The navy also added that the personnel boarded the stateless shipping vessel and thoroughly searched. The same ship was caught last year for transporting thousands of weapons.
The seizure came through when there are enough tensions in the region as a terrific drone-and-missile attack on Abu Dhabi by the Houthis compelled the Saudi Arabian–led coalition to start airstrikes on Yemen recently.
The pro-government coalition did acknowledge the strikes on Hodeida and Sanaa that took the lives of 17, including young children, and triggered an internet blackout in the country.
However, it refused the bombing of a prison in Saada, which is the rebels’ northern heartland. The blast killed at least 70 and injured over 100.
The same stateless fishing vessel was also carrying at least thousands of weapons the AK47 assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenade launchers when it was ordered to stop last February.
The coalition spearheaded by the Saudis and its allies, including the US, accuse Iran of extending military support to the Houthis.