US offers $15m reward for information on IRGC's financial networks

Fishing boat bound for Yemen found with 2,116 rifles that Washington says were destined for Iran-backed Houthis

Thousands of AK-47 assault rifles on the flight deck of a US Navy vessel that were seized from a fishing boat in the Gulf of Oman. Picture: US Navy
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

The US State Department has offered up to $15 million for information on the financial networks of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

It follows a weapons raid earlier this month on a fishing boat bound for Yemen in the Gulf of Oman, in which the US Navy seized 2,116 rifles.

Washington said the weapons were destined for the Iran-backed Houthi militia in Yemen.

“How can Iran buy all these weapons and ship them to Yemen?,” the State Department’s Rewards for Justice programme said in reply to a US Central Command tweet including two photos from the January 10 raid.

“Was the shipment from the IRGC meant for the Houthis? We're offering a reward of up to $15 million for information on the IRGC's financial networks.”

More than 50 tonnes of ammunition, fuses and propellants for rockets were confiscated on December 1. More than 70 tonnes of ammonium perchlorate, a compound commonly used to make rocket and missile fuel, as well as 100 tonnes of urea fertiliser, were taken on November 8.

The Rewards for Justice programme was created by the US government in 1982 to fight international terrorism.

The UN has expressed hope for peace talks in Yemen, while cautioning that negotiations must be more “inclusive” after a series of faltering ceasefires this year.

Yemen’s eight-year conflict saw its first ceasefire in April between the internationally-recognised government and Iran-backed Houthi militias. The government accused the militias of violating the truce on several occasions.

Updated: January 25, 2023, 7:48 AM