Iran's embassy in Nigeria refuses to discuss arms seizure

Statement says Teheran won't elaborate on military-grade weaponry, which included 107mm rockets, seized in Nigeria.

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
November 1, 2010 15:16
1 minute read.
Weapons found in Nigeria

nigeria weapons 311. (photo credit: Associated Press)

 
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ABUJA, Nigeria — Iran's embassy in Nigeria on Monday said it would not elaborate on military-grade weaponry seized in Nigeria and linked to Iran.

A statement released said that "any unnecessary word would add to the confusion already existing." The embassy also said that no Iranian had been arrested over the weapons seizure.

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Agents with Nigeria's State Security Service discovered the weapons Tuesday. On Saturday, CMA CGM, an international cargo shipper based in France, said the cache containing weaponry and seized by Nigerian security agents at the West African nation's busiest port originally came from Iran.

The MV CMA CGM Everest picked up the 13 shipping containers from Bandar Abbas, a port in southern Iran, the company said. The shipment, which stopped in Mumbai's port before heading to Lagos, had been labeled as containing "packages of glass wool and pallets of stone."

Journalists allowed to view the weapons on Wednesday saw 107mm rockets, rifle rounds and other items labeled in English. Authorities said the shipment also contained grenades, explosives and possibly rocket launchers, but journalists did not see them.

Israeli officials accused Iran of trying to sneak the shipment into the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. By unloading the weapons in Nigeria, the Israeli claim suggests Iran perhaps sought to truck the weapons through Africa to slide around an embargo now in place in Gaza.

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