Victoria arms vessel
Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit
The Iranian army's chief of staff, General Atallah Salhi, denied on Wednesday Israel's claims that his country had sent the arms ship Victoria, intercepted by the IDF en route to Gaza with 50 tons of weaponry on board.
"The Jerusalem occupation regime is a regime of lies, production of lies, and dissemination of lies. We reject all of these mendacious reports," he told IRNA.
(Video) Islamic Republic taking advantage of recent upheaval in Egypt to send weapons, terrorists to Sinai unchecked. Missiles found on "Victoria" vessel could have threatened ships docking in Ashkelon, gas reservoir
The general also took the opportunity to express his hopes for Israel's future. "God willing, this regime will sink into the Mediterranean Sea like the regime of the pharaohs in Egypt," he said.
"Israel is the only one harmed by the rise of Islam in the countries of the Middle East and North Africa."
Officials believe the Victoria was sent by Tehran because of the sophisticated surface-to-sea missiles found on board together with Farsi-language manuals, which are attired with the emblem of Iran's Revolutionary Guards.
In addition, a Nasr-1 cruise missile was found to have a serial number close to that with which Iranian Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi was pictured in January 2010, when Iran began producing the missile originally made by China.
Israeli officials believe Iran sent the Victoria in an attempt to take advantage of the upheaval in Egypt, hoping that it would be allowed to pass through to Gaza's terror organizations unchecked.
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