Lebanon shipped seized Hellfire missiles to US 'officially'
The missiles were received by the Lebanese army from the US government more than a year ago for training purposes, the source added, and contain no explosives.
They were being returned to the US after the training was completed.
An official statement from the Lebanese army later confirmed the Beirut government had allowed the training missiles into the plane, putting to rest concerns regarding safety protocols at the country's main international airport in the capital.
|The package with two guided armour-piercing missiles had been discovered on Saturday by a sniffer dog after an Air Serbia flight from Beirut landed at Belgrade airport.|
Terror plot scare
The military statement comes a day after Serbian media said that authorities are investigating reports that a cargo package bound for the US containing two missiles with explosive warheads were found on a passenger flight from Lebanon to Serbia, triggering concerns about a terrorist plot.
Serbian N1 television said documents listed the final destination for the AGM-114 Hellfire missiles as Portland, Oregon.
The Serbian state news agency Tanjug reported that the missiles had been packed in wooden coffins and unloaded at the Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport, where they were inspected by bomb-sniffing dogs.
The AGM-114 model is manufactured by Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Northrup Grumman. It weighs around 100 pounds and cost about $110,000 apiece. Most models use lasers to home in on their targets, although one version of the AGM-114 relies on radar.
The FBI in Portland said it is looking into the reports.
"We don't have any information on that yet," Jennifer Adams, an FBI spokeswoman, said on Sunday afternoon.
N1 reported Sunday that Air Serbia is helping in the investigation. The Serbian flag carrier says "security and safety are the main priorities for Air Serbia."