Photo Credit: IDF
An IDF Naval Commando unit overtook an Iranian weapons ship flying a Panama flag in the Red Sea, some 1,500 km from Israeli shore.

– On November 4th 2009, the Israeli Navy boarded the Francop, a merchant vessel en route Latakia in Syria. Upon inspection, IDF forces discovered 500 tons of Iranian-made weapons, secreted away in 36 unmarked cargo crates. The shipment included various rockets, cannons, hand grenades and rifle ammunition – all disguised and covered up by sacks of ordinary supplies, in a similar method to that used on the KLOS-C.

– On March 2011, Israeli Navy commandos boarded the civilian vessel Victoria which was headed from Syria to the Egyptian port city Alexandria. The ship was carrying approximately 50 tons of concealed weaponry, including Iranian-made C-704 surface-to-sea missiles, mortars and ammunition. The shipment was intended for terror organizations in the Gaza Strip, such as Hamas or the PIJ (Palestinian Islamic Jihad).


– On January 22nd, 2002, Isreali Navy commandos boarded the merchant vessel Karine-A which had been purchased by Palestinian owners in order to smuggle weapons from Iran to the Gaza Strip. The ship had loaded its cargo in Iran, sailed through the Persian Gulf and was stopped on its way to Israel – much like the KLOS-C. The Karine-A had was shipping 50 tons of weaponry.

Minister of Defense Yaalon and Chief of Staff Gantz overseeing the operation.

Smuggling attempts via land:

On January and April 2012, Turkish authorities twice seized several trucks carrying contraband weapons on their way from Iran to Syria.

Airborne smuggling attempts:

The Iranians have long been utilizing the aerial route to Lebanon in order to smuggle weapons to the area in a quick and discreet way. For over a decade, the Quds Force and the Revolutionary Guard have been shipping weapons to Syria, primarily through the companies “Iran-Air,” “Mahan-Air,” and the government owned company “Maaraj-Air.” Since the fighting in Syria started, Iran has been delivering weapons shipments on an almost weekly basis.


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