A ship carrying illicit arms believed to be from Iran was intercepted last week off the southern Arabian Peninsula by a member of a U.S.-backed naval coalition and was not registered with any country, the U.S. Navy said Wednesday.
The description of the ship's seizure conflicted in some instances with an earlier account provided by a separate Saudi-led coalition battling Yemen's Shiite rebels, which claimed in a statement carried by the state-run Saudi Press Agency that it had foiled the smuggling attempt.
The Saudi coalition alleged that Iran was using the vessel to ship arms to the rebels, charges denied by Tehran.
The U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet, based in Bahrain, said a member of the Combined Maritime Forces, a longstanding multinational coalition, intercepted the vessel in international waters last Friday.
An American guided missile destroyer, the USS Forrest Sherman, arrived to assist once the weapons were found aboard the dhow, a type of vessel commonly used in the Persian Gulf and Indian Ocean.
A search of the ship determined that it was "stateless," or not formally registered to any country, although it appears to have been coming from Iran, according to the U.S. Navy.