Nigeria: Are Illegal military-grade arms shipments coming from India?

Discussion in 'Foreign Relations' started by Rage, Oct 29, 2010.

  1. Rage

    Rage DFI TEAM Stars and Ambassadors

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    Nigeria customs: weapons ship sailed from India

    [​IMG]
    Arms removed from a crate off-loaded from a container at Apapa Port
    are displayed by authorities in Lagos on October 27, 2010. Nigerian authorities
    intercepted the shipment of weapons including rocket launchers and grenades at
    the port in the economic capital of Lagos, an intelligence agency spokeswoman
    said. – AFP Photo



    LAGOS: An illegal shipment of military-grade armaments seized in Nigeria came from a ship that had just left India, officials said Thursday, as investigators continued to trace the weapons’ origins.

    Wale Adeniyi, a spokesman for Nigeria’s Customs Service, said Thursday that the MV CMA-CGM Everest dropped the weapons off at Lagos’ busy Apapa Port in July. The 13 shipping containers remained unexamined until Tuesday, when authorities with Nigeria’s secretive State Security Service broke open the sealed boxes and discovered weapons that included 107 mm artillery missiles.

    The Everest, a cargo ship registered in the Marshall Islands, is owned by CMA-CGM, a shipping company based in France. In a statement released Thursday, CMA-CGM said the containers holding the weapons were owned by the firm that shipped them. The shipping company said the manifest for the weapons described the shipment as “packages of glasswool and pallets of stone.”

    The containers “were supplied, loaded and sealed by the shipper, delivered to the port of loading for transportation and remained sealed during the whole transportation process,” CMA-CGM’s statement read. “The seals were fully intact upon discharge in Nigeria.”

    The company declined to comment further, other than to say it has cooperated with Nigerian security services.

    Adeniyi said the ship last stopped at Mumbai’s Jawaharlal Nehru Port before coming to Nigeria. He said security officials became suspicious of the containers as the shipment did not have proper documentation.

    “The importer and exporter had no address on the system, and we have reasons to believe that the importer’s name given in the import documents is fictitious,” Comptroller-General of Customs Dikko Abdullahi said in a statement.

    The origin of the weapons remains unclear, though the rockets and the boxes containing rifle rounds bore English words.

    The containers have “been on ground since July. There have been some attempts to clear them” for importation into Nigeria, Adeniyi said. “We understand later that there was an application to re-export them.”

    Officials allowed journalists visiting the holding yard just inside of the port’s main gate Wednesday to see the 107 mm rockets, rifle rounds and other weapons seized.

    Authorities said the shipment also contained grenades, explosives and possibly rocket launchers, but journalists did not see them.
    In the hands of highly trained troops, the 107 mm artillery rockets can accurately hit targets as far as eight and a half kilometers away, killing everything within about 40 feet.

    Fighters in Afghanistan and Iraq have used similar rockets against US troops.

    The seizure comes as Nigeria, an OPEC-member nation that is one of the top crude oil suppliers to the United States, approaches what could be a highly contested presidential election next year. Security remains a concern in Nigeria as it continues to see targeted killings allegedly committed by a radical Islamic sect in the north and the threat of new violence in its oil-rich southern delta. — AP


    http://public.dawn.com/2010/10/28/nigeria-customs-weapons-ship-sailed-from-india.html
     
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  3. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    I guess India is trying to arm militia to gain control of Nigeria's oil reserves. I bet China is also doing the same. Regional power play is heating up.
     
  4. The Messiah

    The Messiah Bow Before Me! Elite Member

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    I like how they (dawn) are trying to imply that India arms the taliban against the west by saying they use similar weapons.

    Ofcourse they use similar weapons you idiots.....no one is going to invent new weapons specially for them and they themselves dont have knowledge to build.
     
  5. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    Dawn is known for rhetorical articles, however, Dawn does indeed (IMHO) seem to be one of the more balanced newspapers. They do carry news that goes diametrically opposite to the more 'mainstream' radical viewpoints regarding India.

    Although it is true that India has no hand whatsoever in the Taliban insurgency in Pakistan, I cannot say the same with 100% confidence regarding the Baloch insurgency.
     
  6. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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  7. badguy2000

    badguy2000 Respected Member Senior Member

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    well, it must be Bull$hit! all arms shipment from democracies are legal and all arms shipment from non-democracies are illegal,which is a obvious fact!
     
  8. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Miss badguy Last stop of ship was India doesn't mean weapons came from India. Moreover no one said that it has made in India label Unlike ones used in genocides.
     
  9. Oracle

    Oracle New Member

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    Did you forget that fake medicines were exported from mainland China into Africa, by pasting 'Made in India' labels. Do you know the Chinese Government did actually apologize then.
     
  10. Sridhar

    Sridhar House keeper Moderator

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    Customs seize 13 containers of arms, ammunition in Lagos




    Written by Dele Aderibigbe and Okey Muogbo Wednesday, 27 October 2010


    MEN of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), on Tuesday, seized 13 container loads of arms and ammunition, at the Lagos Ports Complex. They were brought into the country allegedly to prosecute the 2011 general election.
    Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Marvel Akpoyibo, heads of the State Security Service (SSS), Directorate of Military Intelligence, Naval Intelligence and other security chiefs were still at the port when Nigerian Tribune reporter left there at 7.46 p.m.
    Impeccable sources told the Nigerian Tribune that the containers, which were off-loaded at the AP Moller Terminal, drew attention when the clearing agent reportedly pledged to pay any amount to have them transferred from the port to an off-dock terminal, preferring to have the containers screened outside the ports.
    The containers, which the sources disclosed were shipped in from Iran, allegedly contained various sizes of grenades, rocket launchers, different types of bombs, assault rifles and heavy machine guns.
    Nigerian Tribune further learnt that once the agent’s entreaties had failed, the report was communicated to relevant people, who decided to perform an on-the-spot evaluation, even as the importers reportedly went underground.
    “We cannot quantify the contents yet. All we know for now is that they are concealed in tiles,” a source, pleading anonymity said, adding that nobody was going home from the port till today (Wednesday).
    “When the Customs Public Relations Officer was contacted, he confirmed it, highlighting that the first container which was opened at about 6.00 p.m. was still being examined.
    “As I am speaking right now with you, the first container is still being examined. We understand they are 13 in number. And the content of the first showed it had mortals, bullets and such related items,”Customs Public Relations Officer, Mr. Wale Adeniyi, said at 8.07 p.m.
    Commenting on the development, spokesperson of the SSS, Marilyn Ogar, an Assistant Director, confirmed that the bill of lading accompanying the containers listed their contents as building materials.
    According to her, of the 13 containers, 12 were still to be examined as operatives were busy searching the first container which carried 24 different crates containing what were suspected to be explosives, including grenades, rocket launchers and ammunition of different capacities.
    Mrs Ogar, however, said that investigations were still ongoing to establish more issues about the imports, adding that the country of origin could not be disclosed at press time because of bilateral concerns.


    http://tribune.com.ng/index.php/fro...ize-13-containers-of-arms-ammunition-in-lagos
     
  11. Sridhar

    Sridhar House keeper Moderator

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    Seized weapons meant for Hamas –Report


    Written by Dele Aderibigbe, Lagos, with Agency Reports Friday, 29 October 2010


    THE huge consignment of arms and ammunition seized by security operatives in Lagos may have been intended for the Gaza-based militant outfit Hamas, Israeli media reported, quoting the country's defence officials on Thursday.
    Following an intelligence tip off, security personnel impounded a shipment of 13 containers unloaded from an Iranian flagged vessel at the Lagos Ports on Tuesday.
    An inspection of the consignment, listed as building materials, yielded several rocket launchers, grenades and other explosives.
    According to reports, the Israeli mission in Lagos was in touch with one of the security agencies and the Nigerian Foreign Ministry as part of efforts to know more about the incident.
    A preliminary probe into the incident indicated the possibility of a new route from Iran to Gaza through Africa.
    Israeli defence officials said it could be that the close vigil mounted on Iranian ships prevented Tehran from sending arms to Hamas via the Red Sea.
    Back in March 2009, Israeli Air Force jets strafed a convoy carrying weapons in Sudan on its way to Gaza. However, Israel refused to confirm its involvement in the attack.
    Later in November, Israeli navy boarded the ship "Francop" in the Mediterranean Sea, which was carrying hundreds of tons of weapons from Iran to Syria.
    Meanwhile, anyone who imports items capable of putting the security of Nigeria at risk would not be spared, the Comptroller General of Customs, Alhaji Dikko Abdullahi, said on Thursday.
    The Customs boss who gave the warning in Apapa Port, Lagos, while making an on-the-spot assessment of the heavy weapons inside the 13 containers at the AP Moller Terminal, stressed that the service had put in place a clearing format which prioritised issues of national security above every other consideration, personal or economic.
    “Let me assure you, we are operating an automated clearing procedure system which insists that certain conditions must be met before any item would be cleared. There is no way you can clear any cargo without the capturing of the Form ‘M’ and the Risk Assessment Report (RAR) and that was what happened with this cargo.
    “This cargo did not come with Form ‘M’ it did not come with RAR and so our system automatically rejected it,” the Customs boss said, adding that there was indeed an attempt to clear it, but the Customs system rejected it and that was the beginning of trouble for the cargo.
    “We have a very solid system. And it is part of the benefits of the system that we are seeing now,” he explained further, adding that a comprehensive investigation had already begun, and that the government would not rest on its oars until the culprits were apprehended and brought to book.
    “We are talking of our national security. We don’t have any country other than this country. So, I can assure you that no government would treat this issue with kid gloves,” he indicated further, even as a seasoned freight forwarder, Dr Boniface Aniebonam, said he was at a loss at the intelligence of those who brought in such deadly cargo through the sea port, knowing the present security arrangement on the ground.
    “I have seen some of the items in the containers. I can assure you, whoever brought them in was preparing for war. Nobody moves a thing like this through an approved seaport! I mean, it shows the level of their mentality,” he stated.


    http://tribune.com.ng/index.php/front-page-news/12850-seized-weapons-meant-for-hamas-report
     
  12. Sridhar

    Sridhar House keeper Moderator

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    NEWS ANALYSIS: More questions than answers on seized containers


    Written by Our Reporter Friday, 29 October 2010


    THE ongoing inspection of the 13 container loads of heavy weaponry at the Lagos Ports Complex, Apapa, may leave more questions unanswered as unfolding facts show that the importers actually made desperate moves to re-export the cargo to The Gambia when all efforts to secretly bring them in had failed.
    The inspections, followed by the revelation that the vessel arrived on July 10, off-loaded the cargo and sailed away five days later, has also made industry operators more baffled, as some of them who spoke with the Nigerian Tribune wondered why the cargo had not been declared an over-time cargo by the terminal operator, and subsequently offered to government for auctioning.
    An informed source told the Nigerian Tribune that the rocket launchers not only shared resemblance with some of those being freely used by fanatics in Iran to wage resistance against the Western forces, military operatives also confirmed that they could easily be deployed to targets eight kilometres away, with pin-point accuracy.
    “Whoever brought these items in was not interested in the 2011 elections. He was probably interested in ensuring that the country could be totally ungovernable, in case the elections results were unfavourable,” revealed a military operative.
    A police officer, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, said the type of mortals, grenades and rocket launchers were technically superior to whatever could be deployed against the Nigerian Police in case there was a confrontation.
    “I am sincerely impressed by their selection. These totally outclassed whatever we can boast of now. The bullets were most impressive; they are meant for professionals,” the police officer highlighted, noting that if properly deployed, they could withstand the military in a guerrilla warfare for two weeks.
    But while the reactions continue, a seasoned master mariner has called on Nigerians not to allow the nation’s ports to become the African continent’s ports of convenience where goods that could constitute threat to national security can be dumped at will.
    Captain Solomon Omoteso, in a reaction on the need to improve on security on land by reinforcing security and patrols of the nation’s water sector, said he was alarmed that the authorities were feigning concerns with findings in the ports area when they all knew that the nation’s water fronts were as porous as ever.
    The 13 containers, according to experts, were loaded by experts who ensured that while each container had 24 pallets of stacked items, the last four outside towards the exit were only of tiles, while the rest consisted of heavy weapons.
    It was learnt that when it dawned on the importers that the goods could not be taken into the city from the port, they attempted to re-export them to the Port of Gambia, a ploy meant to first get them out of the port so as to take them mid-stream and thereafter off-load them again through barges and fishing trawlers, so as to smuggle them inside in bits into the cities again.


    http://tribune.com.ng/index.php/new...e-questions-than-answers-on-seized-containers
     
  13. Tshering22

    Tshering22 Sikkimese Saber Senior Member

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    This isn't an Indian ship of arms. I have read this report earlier and it was stated that India was merely a stop and basically was an arms cache from Iran to smuggle into Israel's troubled regions and Hezbollah through Somalia and then through lax Egyptian security into Sinai.
     

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