First Published: 2005-01-11

 
Kuwait hunts for suspected Al-Qaeda militants
 

Interior minister orders crackdown on militants after deadly gunfight with security forces in Kuwait City.

 

Middle East Online

By Omar Hasan - KUWAIT CITY

The militants are said to be Kuwaiti nationals

Kuwait was hunting Tuesday for up to three suspected Al-Qaeda-linked Islamist militants after a deadly gunfight with security forces that triggered a new US terror warning.

The emirate has also ordered a crackdown on militants after two Kuwaiti security officers and a suspect were killed in the shootout Monday when security forces moved in on a Kuwait City suburb to make an arrest.

"Security forces are looking for two to three suspects" who fled after the gunfight, a security official said.

"They are known to us and we will find them soon. They are suspected of being linked to Al-Qaeda terror network."

Neighbouring Saudi Arabia is also battling Al-Qaeda-linked militants behind a wave of violence since May 2003 that has left more than 100 people dead.

The US embassy in Kuwait, a key US ally in the region, issued a new warning to Americans Tuesday that armed "terrorists" were at large in the emirate and that US citizens should exercise caution.

"At least one suspected terrorist, known to be armed and dangerous, remains at large. The two terrorists involved in the shooting may have been part of a larger group," said a message from the embassy, the second alert in as many days.

The mission had warned its citizens Monday that assailants were driving around Kuwait planning to "randomly attack Westerners."

After the shootout, Kuwaiti Interior Minister Sheikh Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Sabah Monday night held an emergency meeting with his top security aides and ordered a crackdown on militants.

He said the dead suspect and those who fled were Kuwaiti nationals.

The minister however refused to link the militants with Al-Qaeda, preferring to wait until investigations were completed.

The gunfight erupted when intelligence men from the emirate's secret service, which deals with political and security matters, came to arrest the suspect, Fawaz Talaiq al-Oteibi.

Oteibi fired at police and fled to where a number of suspected militants were waiting in a car. The militants shot and killed two intelligence men and wounded two others. Oteibi later died in hospital.

US forces and civilians in Kuwait have been the target of a number of attacks, two of them fatal.

Around 25,000 US soldiers are stationed in Kuwait, which is used as a transit point for US and other coalition troops headed for Iraq.

Some 12,000 American civilians also live in Kuwait alongside around 9,000 Europeans and some 1,000 Australians.

 

Turkish warplanes pound Kurdish forces in Iraq, Syria

US criticizes 1915 massacres in Armenia

Iran, major powers to review adherence to nuclear deal

Netanyahu cancels talks with German FM over NGO meetings

Young Iraqi innovator building home-made drones

Baghdad condemns Turkish airstrikes on Kurdish forces

IS executes Iraqi civilians in Mosul

Qatar World Cup workers receive random health checks

Libyan government calls for foreign intervention as fighting spreads

Tunisia parliament votes to ease harsh drug law

Nostalgia dominates Iraqi Ba’ath conference in Spain

Moroccans call on Le Pen voters to quit country

Turkey court rejects opposition challenge to referendum result

Spain arrests 4 for links to Belgium IS attacks

Iraq forces push towards UNESCO site in Hatra

Israel appoints country's first female sharia judge

Frontline clinic is window to hell of IS-held Mosul

Iraq forces retake west Mosul neighbourhood from IS

Iraqi Kurds lament ‘unacceptable’ Turkish air strikes

Khamenei urges Iran candidates to focus on home

UN chief urges donors to prevent Yemen famine

Yemen’s ‘march for bread’ protestors end week-long march

Jailed British-Iranian sees final appeal rejected in Tehran

Iran election may be pointer to race for supreme leader

US-backed forces enter key IS-held Syria town Tabqa

Israel probe clears officer who shot teen attackers

Syria ‘ready’ to halt fire for chemical attack probe

Israel charges teenager for bomb threats against Jewish institutions

Egypt sentences 20 to death over 2013 police killings

Erdogan accuses researcher of 'inciting assassination'

Qatar Airways CEO accuses US carriers of ‘bullying’

At least 15 migrants drown near Lesbos

Former employees work to salvage Mosul University

Jordan wary about jihadists wishing to return home

US fires opening shots in confrontation with Iran

Mattis sees Saudi Arabia ‘helping across the region’

Sirens, silence as Israel remembers Holocaust

Houthis intensify crackdown on dissent in Yemen

Italian reporter released in Turkey

Algiers summons Morocco envoy over Syrian migrant row

Macron, Le Pen gird for final French election duel

Iran reverses decision to ban live presidential debates

Six Israelis including two soldiers held for anti-Arab attacks

Economists, rights advocates concerned over Egypt’s state of emergency

US Defense Secretary Mattis visits strategic Djibouti