Egyptian authorities seized a ship today with a crew of 13 and a cargo that included over 40 tons of arms and ammunition.The weaponry included sniper-rifles, AK-47s,and RPGs.
According to Israel's Channel 10, the arms were from Iran and Iranians were part of the crew.The ship itself is an Iranian vessel, the "Sawit 1" . Apparently the ship suffered a breakdown at sea and was towed into an Egyptian port.
The vessel was interdicted off of Sinai and was believed to be headed for Gaza or Syria. Given the location, the arms probably originated in the Sudan, an Iranian ally where Iran has both bases and arms factories. The Sudan has been a source of arms convoys to Gaza before, but they've used land routes before.
According to the Lebanese website Ya Libnan, the ship was carrying more than 50,000 light and medium weapons as well "a huge quantity of ammunition."
Sgyptian spokesman Colonel Ahmed Mohamed Ali said on his Facebook page the ship belonged to a company that secures maritime routes in the Red Sea and that "The weapons and ammunition on this ship are related to its work and mission to secure commercial vessels."
Which, of course is why the ship had Iranians on board and was headed in the opposite direction, away from Africa and the Red Sea!
That's also a change from the story the Egyptians were putting out before, that it was an Israeli ship out of Eilat.Again, that would explain why it was an Iranian ship flying the flag of the West African nation of Togo with Iranians on board that somehow ended up headed towards those well known friends of Israel, Hamas-ruled Gaza and the Assad regime in Syria.
Apparently even the Egyptians eventually realized how far fetched that one was.
No word yet on whether the ship was released, but if it is I guarantee the IDF is watching and waiting....