The intercepted Iranian arms shipment to Gaza was safely re-routed to Israel over the weekend, with the full weapons inspection completed yesterday evening by the Israeli Defense Forces.
The inspection was dubbed Operation Full Disclosure, and was conducted by a task force combining units from several Israeli agencies, including the Navy, the Combat Engineering Corps, and the Ordinance Corps.
After the inspection, the IDF announced it had found 40 rockets with a range of 100 miles, 180 mortar shells, and approximately 400,000 7.62 caliber rounds.
IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz praised troops involved in uncovering the smuggling attempt, which was thwarted last week, and commended the efforts to complete 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,” Gantz said. “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.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also praised the IDF’s efforts during the weekly Cabinet meeting yesterday.
“The operation to seize the ship had two goals: Preventing the delivery of deadly weapons to terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip, which would have directly endangered Israel’s citizens, and exposing the true face of Iran, which was behind this weapons shipment,” Netanyahu said.
“Iran completely denies its involvement; it is lying in the most brazen manner. We will present evidence of this tomorrow and later.”
The IDF also revealed today that a military intel source confirmed Iran’s culpability in the smuggling attempt, despite the Islamic republic’s denial of responsibility.
“We have solid information that proves Iran’s relationship with the shipment,” a senior IDF Intelligence officer said, according to the IDF Blog.
“Firstly, the containers were sealed in Iran, and they have Iranian authenticity seals on them, including seals of the Iranian postal company. The cement bags that were used to hide the weapons were clearly marked as coming from Iran.”