U.S. Navy Seizes Illegal Weapons in Arabian Sea -The Firearm Blog

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U.S. Navy Seizes Illegal Weapons in Arabian Sea

Thousands of Chinese Type 56 assault rifles, hundreds of PKM machine guns, sniper rifles and rocket-propelled grenades launchers together with dozens of advanced Russian-made anti-tank guided missiles were found and interdicted on a stateless dhow in the North Arabian Sea. The guided-missile cruiser USS Monterey, part of the U.S. Fifth Fleet, intercepted the boat and discovered the cargo during a routine boarding.

Below you can see an SH-60 Seahawk helicopter hovering above the stateless dhow interdicted with a shipment of illicit weapons, likely headed for Yemen. This happened in the international waters of the North Arabian Sea on May 6-7.

On the deck can be seen hundreds of 7.62x39mm Type 56 rifles originating from China along with 7.62x54Rmm PKM general purpose light machine guns and SVD-pattern DMRs.

NORTH ARABIAN SEA (May 7, 2021) Sailors from the guided-missile cruiser USS Monterey (CG 61) inventory shipment of illicit weapons interdicted from a stateless dhow in international waters of the North Arabian Sea on May 6-7. Maritime security operations, as conducted by the U.S. Fifth Fleet, entail routine patrols to determine pattern of life in the maritime as well as to enhance mariner-to-mariner relations. These operations reassure allies and partners and preserve freedom of navigation and free flow of commerce. (U.S. Navy Photo)

According to a tweet from the U.S. 5th Fleet there were also “advanced optical sights” in the shipment, though these are not pictured.

Below is a short video from the USS Monterey showing the weapons on deck. (Video by U.S. Navy Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Chelsea Palmer).

Here are some stills from the video, giving us a closer look at some of the weapons seized in the shipment.

Front and centre is an Iranian AM50 anti-materiel rifle (U.S. Navy Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Chelsea Palmer)

SVD-pattern rifles, PKMs and RPGs (U.S. Navy Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Chelsea Palmer)

Which firearms can you identify? It looks like we have quite a few Iranian AM50 anti-materiel rifles in there as well. This is enough to equip a smaller army, but I guess the ammunition is on another route.

The U.S. Navy said that the arms are now in US custody and their source and intended destination is under investigation.

For more information head to our sister site Over Defense for more on this story.





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