Yemen seizes arms shipment originating from Turkey

Yemen says the shipment contained at least 114 Turkish automatic rifles. (Photo courtesy of Saba)

Yemeni authorities in the port of Aden seized a shipment of weapons that originated from Turkey, state news agency Saba reported on Friday.

Head of the Customs Authority Mohamed Zumam told Saba that the initial information on the new arms shipment showed that there are 115 of T14 Turkish automatic rifles ,and there are 63 cartons will be inventoried and each carton contains 60 automatic rifles.

“If that calculation correct, we expect to have the total number of seized weapons inside the cartons about 3780 automatic rifles”, Zumam added.

At the beginning of November, the Yemeni defence ministry said a cargo of weapons found in boxes used for biscuits and originating in Turkey had been seized in Aden.

Ankara said afterwards that it had never authorised sending arms to Yemen.

"We certainly have not authorised such a shipment of weapons. It is not thinkable to OK such arms exports to countries where conflict risks are high and where it could result in more deaths," the Turkish foreign ministry said.

Yemen is already awash with guns.

The impoverished nation is prey to attacks in the east and south blamed on Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP, that have become more frequent in the wake of a 2011 popular uprising that ousted veteran strongman Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Last Update: Sunday, 03 March 2013 KSA 17:17 - GMT 14:17