YB WEB DESK. Dated: 3/4/2024 11:34:41 AM

Pakistan,Mar 03 On 11 January, the United States Navy Seals intercepted a dhow, a small boat that is used by Asian fisherman and local traders, in the Arabian Sea off the Somali coast. The said boat was found to be carrying Iranian-made advanced conventional weapons, including critical parts for medium-range ballistic missiles and anti-ship cruise missiles. The Seals, who lost two of their commandos during the operation, arrested 14 individuals, all of whom were carrying Pakistani identification cards, from the boat. In their initial interrogation, the arrested accused told the officials that they had sailed from Pakistan. Subsequently, they stated they had sailed from Konarak, Iran. As per their further interrogation they had sailed from Chabahar port, Iran on 5 January. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the said missile components were meant for the Houthi rebels and were being sent by Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps. Less than two months of this incident in a similar development, Indian officials on Tuesday arrested five individuals, the identities of whom are suspected to be of Pakistani origin. The dhow that was seized off the coast of Gujarat at Arabian Sea and detained by the Indian security agencies, was carrying more than 3,000 kilograms of drugs. According to official sources, the increase in the use of such non-military vessels like dhow for smuggling drugs and weapons is becoming a cause for serious concern for both Indian Navy and Coast-Guard, as well as international law enforcement agencies, as it is impossible to stop and search every such vessel that operates in the Arabian Sea, given the sheer large number of boats that are active in the seas at any given time. India’s western coast extends for roughly 1,500 km from Kanyakumari (Tamil Nadu) in the south to Surat (Gujarat) in the north and is the preferred landing spot for smuggling


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