A US Coast Guard cutter, forward deployed to the US Central Command (CENTCOM) area of responsibility, seized an assortment of advanced conventional weapons and other lethal aid in the Arabian Sea on 28 January 2024, according to a statement from 15 February.

The assortment of weapons are said to have originated in Iran, and were bound for Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen.

Since the end of 2023, the Iranian-backed Houthis have been targetting commercial shipping, as well as UK and US warships, in the region in support of Hamas in its war against Israel.

The Sentinel-class fast-response cutter, USCGC Clarence Sutphin Jr (WPC 1147), discovered more than 200 packages.

These contained medium-range ballistic missile components; explosives; uncrewed underwater/surface vehicle (UUV/USV) components; military-grade communication and network equipment; anti-tank guided missile launcher assemblies; and other military components.

“This is yet another example of Iran’s malign activity in the region,” stated General Michael Erik Kurilla, CENTCOM commander.

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“Their continued supply of advanced conventional weapons to the Houthis is in direct violation of international law and continues to undermine the safety of international shipping and the free flow of commerce.”

Meanwhile, Iranian state media reported that the Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said that “the genocide and crime against humanity happening in Gaza necessities, more than ever before, the co-operation to replace the current unjust system with a just order.”