US Navy pays bounty for information on arms and drug smuggling in the Persian Gulf and the region

The US Navy in the Middle East has begun offering rewards for “information that can help sailors intercept weapons, drugs and other illegal shipments throughout the region.”

The US Navy’s Fifth Fleet will begin providing operational intelligence assets and other items in the Persian Gulf and strategic waterways as part of a program that begins Tuesday.

The Fifth Fleet said it seized $500 million worth of drugs in 2021 alone, more than the previous four years combined, and last year it intercepted 9,000 weapons, three times more than in 2020.

“Any destabilizing activity gets our attention,” Timothy Hawkins, spokesman for the Fifth Fleet, told The Associated Press. “Our Efforts to Strengthen Regional Maritime Security” as the launch of the new Fifth Fleet initiative is through the Department of Defense Rewards Program.

“Operators fluent in Arabic, English and Farsi will operate the hotline, and the Navy will receive additional online advice in Dari and Pashto,” Hawkins explained.

“Payments can be up to $100,000 or the equivalent in vehicles, boats, or food for tips that also include information about planned attacks on Americans,” he said.

Source: “AB”

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