Officials said Victoria, brought to the Israeli port of Ashdod
for inspection, contained up to 50 tons of heavy weapons. They cited
60mm and 120mm mortars, missiles, rockets and other weapons and equipment.
"Considerable weaponry — which was destined for terrorist forces in the
heart of Gaza — was found onboard the vessel," Prime Minister Benjamin
Officials said Iran has sought to supply the first anti-ship missiles to
Hamas. They said Victoria contained at least four Chinese-origin C-704
anti-ship missile, with a range of 35 kilometers as well as an
Farsi-language operating manual.
The ship was believed to have been loaded with Iranian weapons in
the Syrian port of Latakia. Officials said Victoria then moved to the
Turkish port of Mersin before the trip to Egypt.
"Preliminary evidence indicates that the weapons aboard the ship
originated in Iran, which strives to arm the Gaza Strip," the military
statement said. "Under Hamas rule, the Gaza Strip has become part of the
A military statement said Victoria's crew was questioned and determined
not to have known of the weapons cargo. The statement said the crew
did not resist Israel Navy boarding.
"The IDF will continue its intelligence and operational activities in
order to maintain Israel's security and prevent arms smuggling that will
fuel the terror and strengthen its infrastructure in the Gaza Strip and in
Lebanon," the military said.