Iran denies connection to seized weapons


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Iran denied Israeli assertions that it sent weapons to Gaza aboard a ship intercepted by Israel’s Navy.

"The Jerusalem occupation regime is a regime of lies, production of lies and dissemination of lies. We reject all of these mendacious reports," the Iranian army’s chief of staff, Gen. Atallah Salhi, told the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency on Wednesday.

"God willing, this regime will sink into the Mediterranean Sea like the regime of the pharaohs in Egypt," he is quoted as saying.

The Liberia-flagged cargo ship Victoria was seized Tuesday in the Mediterranean Sea 200 miles west of Israel. The German-owned ship, which originated in Syria, was headed to Egypt via Turkey with tons of concealed weapons that Israel said were bound for Gaza.

The sophisticated missiles found aboard the Victoria came with manuals in Farsi. 

Meanwhile, Egyptian officials on Tuesday told The Associated Press that its military seized five trucks that entered the country carrying weapons from Sudan bound for Gaza. The weapons were to be ferried through smuggling tunnels between Egypt and Gaza, AP reported.  

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