French Navy frigate FS Provence has intercepted a large weapons cache from a small boat (dhow) sailing towards Somalia.
Several hundred machine guns, anti-tank weapons and AK47 assault rifles were among the weapons seized from the dhow.
The weapons smugglers were spotted heading toward Somalia by Provence’s Caïman helicopter whilst it was undertaking routine surveillance in the Northern Indian Ocean.
Provence boarded the vessel and determined that it was not registered in any country. The ship’s boarding team then searched it and discovered the weapons.
As illicit weapons were deemed to be destined for Somalia, they were seized under the United Nations Security Council mandated arms embargo in accordance with UNSCR 2244(2015). The Commanding Officer of Provence commented: “This success remains a collective one, showing the value of like-minded nations committing ships and aircraft for the common good.”
“France has been supporting Combined Maritime Forces operations since their inception. This seizure is another French contribution to the stabilisation of the region,” said a CMF spokesperson.
The FREMM frigate is currently part of the Combined Task Force 150 within Combined Maritime Forces, an international maritime security and counter terrorism group.