France seizes thousands of Iranian assault rifles, missiles heading to Yemen

Assault rifles and missiles seized by the French navy lay on the deck of a ship at an undisclosed location, Feb. 1, 2023. (US military's Central Command via AP)
Assault rifles and missiles seized by the French navy lay on the deck of a ship at an undisclosed location, Feb. 1, 2023. (US military's Central Command via AP)

French naval forces seized thousands of assault rifles, machine guns and anti-tank missiles in the Gulf of Oman coming from Iran heading to Yemen’s Houthi rebels in January, officials say today, the latest such interdiction amid the Mideast nation’s long-running war.

While Iran denies being involved, images of the weapons released by the US military’s Central Command show them to be similar to others captured by American forces in other shipments tied back to Tehran.

The seizure occurred Jan. 15 in the Gulf of Oman, a body of water that stretches from the Strait of Hormuz, the narrow mouth of the Persian Gulf, through to the Arabian Sea and onto the Indian Ocean, US officials say. US Central Command describes the interdiction as happening “along routes historically used to traffic weapons unlawfully from Iran to Yemen.”

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