World: US claims to have intercepted a ship with «lethal aid» sent by Iran to Huthis in Yemen

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The U.S. Army announced Tuesday the interception in the Gulf of Oman of a "fishing vessel" carrying "lethal aid", including "a large quantity of explosive materials", from Iran to Yemen, without Tehran's comment.

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The U.S. Fifth Fleet has indicated in a statement that the 'USS The Sullivans' and a Coast Guard ship intercepted the vessel during the day on November 8 "while transiting international waters".

Thus, it has indicated that another U.S. ship and bomb squad of the Fifth Fleet "assisted during a week-long effort to fully investigate the vessel and verify the type of material found".

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"U.S. forces discovered more than 70 tons of ammonium perchlorate, a powerful oxidizer frequently used to make rocket and missile fuel, as well as explosives," he said, before noting that "this is the first seizure of ammonium perchlorate by the Fifth Fleet in history."

In this sense, the commander of the U.S. Central Command Naval Forces (CENTCOM), Brad Cooper, stressed that "it is a massive amount of explosive material, enough to fuel more than a dozen medium-range ballistic missiles, depending on the size".

"The illegal transfer of lethal aid from Iran does not go unnoticed. It is irresponsible, dangerous, and leads to violence and instability in the Middle East," Cooper said. The inspection also found more than 100 tons of urea fertilizer.

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The U.S. Fifth Fleet also confirmed that the vessel and its crew of four Yemenis were transiting a route "historically used for arms trafficking" to the Huthis in Yemen, in violation of UN Security Council Resolution 2216.

Finally, he stressed that the vessel was sunk on November 13 in the Gulf of Oman after it was found to be "a danger to commercial shipping", while the four detainees were transferred to Yemen for repatriation.

"Together with our allied forces, CETCOM is committed to security and stability in the region and to deterring the illegal and destabilizing delivery of lethal material into the region, whether by land, air or sea," CENTCOM Commander Micheal Kurilla concluded.

The war in Yemen pits the internationally recognized government, now represented by the Presidential Leadership Council and supported by the international coalition led by Saudi Arabia, against the Iranian-backed Huthis. The Huthis control the capital, Sana'a, and areas in the north and west of the country.

The United Nations special envoy for Yemen, Hans Grundberg, is trying to bring the parties closer together to relaunch the peace process, after the expiration in October of the truce agreed in April to mark the beginning of the month of Ramadan and subsequently extended on several occasions.

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