"The Iranians are trying to come up with new ways and routes to smuggle weapons from Iran to its allies in the Middle East, testing and defying the West’s abilities to track them down," an intelligence source told Fox News.
According to the broadcaster, Western intelligence services believe that components for manufacturing precise weapons in Lebanon-based Iranian factories were on board the aircraft.
Iran denies supplying weapons to Hezbollah, although Tehran continues to endorse the Lebanon-based Shi'a organization politically.
Since July, Qeshm Fars Air planes have carried out at least two flights from an air force base in Tehran to Beirut using a rather "uncharacteristic flight path," according to the media report.
The second flight, which was direct from Tehran to Beirut, took place on August 2 and followed an unusual route north of Syria, Fox reported.
In late May, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo listed 12 requirements Washington put forward for Tehran after President Donald Trump's decision to pull out from the Iran nuclear deal, which is formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Pompeo demanded that Iran complied with the JCPOA provisions and changed its domestic and international policies. The secretary of state also said that the United States would deter Iran by all means, including military action, and pledged to find partners to implement its anti-Iran strategy. There was also a requirement to Iran to halt support of paramilitary groups in the region, including Hezbollah in Lebanon and withdraw all Iranian forces from conflict-torn Syria.