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Source Rejects Reports on Seizure of Iranian Ship Carrying Weapons in Sea of Oman

30 September 2015 22:34



An informed source at the Iranian Foreign Ministry on Wednesday rejected as baseless the recent allegations by the western media about the seizure of an Iranian fishing boat in the Sea of Oman carrying weapons by the Saudi-led forces.

“These rumors are spread for the purpose of psychological warfare,” the source, speaking on condition of anonymity said.

The source reiterated that such allegations are “untrue media fabrication and psychological warfare”.

He reiterated that the Yemeni people do not need Iran’s weapons to fight the aggressors, and said, “It is clear that such fabrications and accusations are baseless and the coalition forces have resorted to a threadbare and repeatedly-used scenario after the recent Mina fiasco.”

The source did not deny that an Iranian fishing dhow has been captured, but stressed that the report about its cargo are totally false and baseless.

He said Iran is pursuing the case with the vessel, and added, “The baseless allegations about the cargo of the fishing dhow and the propaganda launched by the media affiliated to the (Saudi-led) coalition are aimed at projecting the blame and do not at all justify the magnitude of the coalition forces’ ceaseless crimes and attacks on the Yemeni people and the destruction of the infrastructures of this Muslim country,” the source added.

The source’s remarks came after the western media, including the Wall Street Journal, on Wednesday quoted the Saudi-led forces as claiming that they had stopped “a boat carrying 14 Iranians and laden with missile launchers and anti-tank weapons”.

However, the US Navy said later in the day that the ship “was not registered with any country”.

The American description of the ship’s seizure in the Northern Arabian Sea conflicted in some instances with an earlier account provided by a separate Saudi-led coalition which claimed it had foiled the smuggling attempt.

The US Navy’s 5th Fleet, based in Bahrain, said a member of the Combined Maritime Forces, a longstanding multinational coalition, intercepted the vessel in international waters last Friday.

An American guided missile destroyer, the USS Forrest Sherman, arrived to assist once the weapons were found aboard the dhow, a type of vessel commonly used in the Persian Gulf and Indian Ocean, the US Navy added.

But according to the WSJ report, the Saudi Arabia-led military coalition claimed that the ship “was seized around1pm local time Saturday, Sept. 26 in the Arabian Sea, about 150 miles southeast of the Omani port of Salalah. Oman shares a border with Yemen”.

The coalition said the boat is registered under the name Jan Mohammed Hut, an Iranian citizen. The vessel had a license from Iranian authorities to fish in those waters, the coalition said, while the American description said the ship “was not registered with any country”.

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