Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Israel Seizes Gaza Bound Arms Ship - En Route From Turkey
The IDF's Shayetet 13 Naval commando unit intercepted a shipload of Iranian weapons headed from Turkey to Gaza on this morning.
It was carrying Iranian weapons that originated in Syria. and while I'm speculating here, I wouldn't be surprised in the least if this was the cargo that was unloaded in the Syrian port of Latakia from the Iranian ships that were allowed through the Suez Canal last month.
The ship, The Victoria, is owned by a German company and flies the Liberian flag. It was en route from the Syrian port of Latakia and made a stop in Mersin, Turkey, before heading toward El Arish. From there, the goods were to be offloaded and travel by land to Hamas in Gaza. It was seized by the navy off the coast of El-Arish in Egypt, 200 miles off of Israel's coast.
The ship was boarded by commandos from the Israel Navy's Flotilla 13, the Shayetet,( who were also the unit used to board the Turkish ship Mavi Mamara) and was taken to the Israeli port of Ashdod.
The IDF's belief at this point is that neither Egypt nor Turkey has any connection to the ship's cargo. Their evidence indicates that Syria and Iran were the main actors.
The full details of the Hamas-bound goodies aboard wil likely be revealed later,but there is speculation that they may have included anti-ship missiles aimed at crippling Israel's navy.
More details as they emerge.