A ship carrying Iranian weapons was sailing through the Red Sea making its way to Syria, al-Arabiya reported on Saturday, citing opposition sources.
“The ship is said to be carrying 8,500 tons of weapons and ground missiles from Iran to be given to the Syrian regime,” the source said. “It is scheduled to make a ‘fuel stop’ at a Syrian port where it will unload its cargo.”
The source also said that the vessel is owned by Syrians and that it was registered in Lebanon and has links to Hezbollah.
Syrian opposition officials reportedly asked Egypt to detain the ship, which is flying a Tanzanian flag, and inspect its cargo holds when it passes through the Suez Canal.
Iran is a longtime ally of Syrian President Bashar Assad, who has been waging a civil war against rebel forces for the last two years.
On Friday, Syrian rebels claimed they had destroyed a plane carrying weapons and ammunition from Iran to the Assad regime in Damascus.
Several members of the Islamic Republic’s Revolutionary Guard corps were injured in the incident, according to a spokesman for the Free Syrian Army’s 30-member Supreme Military Council.
Rebels reported that they had shot at the Iranian plane while it was landing at Damascus International Airport, causing it to burst into flames.
According to rebel sources, the airport has become an “operations center” for the regime and its supporters.
The UN estimates that over 70,000 people have been killed since the start of the uprising against Assad two years ago.