(Washington, D.C.) — UPDATE: “Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday lashed out at the world for its ‘hypocrisy’ over Iran as he unveiled a shipment of arms allegedly dispatched to Gaza by Tehran,” reports Agence France Presse. “Standing in front of a vast display of weapons seized last week from a vessel in the Red Sea, Netanyahu launched a blistering attack on the West over its apparent disregard for Iran’s alleged attempts to supply advanced weapons to Palestinian militants.”
“In a highly-publicised speech from Eilat port, where the weapons had been unloaded, Netanyahu said he had only heard a handful of ‘softly-worded condemnations of Iran’ over its ‘murderous delivery’ which came to light just days before EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton made a landmark visit to Tehran,” reports AFP. “We have been witness to the smiles and the handshakes between representatives of the West and the heads of the Iranian regime in Tehran, even as these missiles were being unloaded here in Eilat,” he said.
“The ship was organised by Iran, despatched by Iran, financed by Iran. The missiles were loaded by Iran, in Iran and as usual Iran denies these facts,” Netanyahu said. “Our intelligence services exposed the ship’s wayward route and Iran’s efforts to disguise it. They exposed the ship’s deadly cargo and its intended destination,” he said.
“Just as Iran hid its deadly missiles in the belly of this ship, Iran is hiding its actions and its intentions in many of its key installations for developing nuclear weapons,” he said. “Before it’s too late, the world must wake up from its illusion and prevent Iran from getting the capability to build a nuclear weapon.”
ORIGINAL POST: Today, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will “unveil the inventory of weapons recovered from the attempted Iranian shipment to Gaza last week on the intercepted freighter Klos C,” the Jerusalem Post reported. “Netanyahu, along with Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, was scheduled on Monday to tour the Eilat naval base where the Klos C is docked, to highlight Iran’s support for terrorism.”
“According to Military Intelligence, Iran originally flew the rockets from Syria to an Iranian airfield a number of months ago, before trucking them to the Iranian port of Bander Abbas, where they were loaded onto the Klos C,” the Post noted. “On Saturday, Israel Navy ships escorted the commandeered freighter to Eilat Port after intercepting it last week in the Red Sea, some 150 km. from Port Sudan and 1,500 km. from Israeli shores. Islamic Jihad was one of the intended recipients of the rockets, and Hamas is also assumed to have been a recipient. IDF intelligence assessments say that Iran’s Quds Force organized the shipment.”
According to the IDF, the following weaponry was found onboard the “Klos-C”:
- 40 rockets (type M-302), up-to the range of 160 kilometers
- 180 mortar shells
- Approximately 400,000 rounds of 7.62 caliber ammunition.
After IDF forces returned from their mission, the Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Benjamin (Benny) Gantz addressed the soldiers who took part in Operation Full Disclosure: “Our efforts to prevent the proliferation of weapons and the supply of critical components with strategic influence over the region is not over, and our struggle does not end by arriving safely at our home port. We will sort through the equipment and continue our day to day efforts. There are many other missions ahead of us. The task we carried out was not a simple one. It was meticulously orchestrated by the IDF and particularly the Navy over a long period of time. It required each and every one of you to perform at your best while spending a significant amount of time at sea, and the product of this hard work is laid in front of you. Each one of these rockets poses a threat to the safety of the citizens of Israel. Each bullet and each rocket that was discovered had an Israeli address.”