According to the Washington Post, the voyage to Syria was called off after its London-based insurer canceled its coverage. The insurance angle was the same used by the United States in February to stop Syria from exporting two shiploads of oil.
About 25 helicopters are believed to be aboard the Russian vessel. They were purchased by Syria from the Soviet Union but had been returned for repairs. Russia downplayed the significance of the shipment, but the United States feared that the helicopters would exacerbate the bloodshed in Syria, where more than 10,000 people have been killed in 16 months.