Iranian sailboat carrying North Korean machine guns seized in 2016

According to a UN monitoring group, North Korean weapons were discovered on a sailboat that was traveling to Somalia in March 2016. The boat listed Iran’s coastal city of Konarak as its home port. Iran has reassured the monitoring group that it has not been involved in the shipment of weapons to Somalia.
Illustration Photo Credit: EPA

A sailboat carrying six machine guns manufactured in North Korea was seized by a French naval vessel in March 2016, according to a report released by the UN Somalia and Eritrea Monitoring Group (SEMG) earlier this month. The report noted that the stateless boat listed Iran’s coastal city of Konarak as its home port and was on its way to Somalia.

In addition to the North Korean machine guns, 2,000 assault rifles, 64 sniper rifles and nine anti-tank guided missiles were discovered on the boat. Iran reportedly received the machine guns from North Korea decades ago and used them during the bloody Iran-Iraq War.   

According to the report, Tehran strongly denied the allegations that it has been involved in the supply of weapons to Somalia while an SEMG delegation was in Iran earlier this year.

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