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Kuwait Qaeda Group Planned Refinery Attack: Report - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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A file photo dated 23 February 2004 showing US army soldiers wash their military vehicles at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait. (EPA)

A file photo dated 23 February 2004 showing US army soldiers wash their military vehicles at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait. (EPA)

KUWAIT (Reuters) – Members of an al Qaeda-linked group arrested in Kuwait planned to attack the OPEC member’s Shuaiba oil refinery, a daily newspaper reported on Wednesday.

The group was targeting the 200,000 barrels per day refinery and the state security building, as well as a U.S. army camp, daily newspaper al-Anbaa reported, citing unidentified sources it said were familiar with the investigation.

The attacks were planned to take place in the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, it added. Ramadan is due to begin later in August.

Kuwait said on Tuesday it had foiled a plan by a six-member Qaeda-linked cell to bomb the Arifjan U.S. army camp and “important facilities,” but gave no further details on the other potential targets.

Members of the group, led by a surgeon at one of the Gulf Arab state’s hospitals, had confessed to planning attacks aimed at pressuring the U.S. to withdraw troops from Kuwait, the paper added.

Kuwait, the world’s fourth-largest oil exporter, was the launch pad for the 2003 U.S.-led war on Iraq to oust Saddam Hussein. The U.S. army uses it as a logistics base to support troops in Iraq. Camp Arifjan is located in the country’s south.

“The network members used Google Earth service to get photographic maps for their targets… Shuaiba refinery, Arifjan Camp and the state security building,” the paper said.

Al Qaeda has waged attacks in the Gulf Arab state in recent years such as bombings of foreign housing complexes and oil sites in several Gulf Arab states including Saudi Arabia, but a crackdown by governments in the region has succeeded in preventing fresh violence.

File photo shows a civilian contractor works on armored vehicles at Camp Arifjan US Military base, 60 km South of Kuwait City. (AP)

File photo shows a civilian contractor works on armored vehicles at Camp Arifjan US Military base, 60 km South of Kuwait City. (AP)

File picture dated January 12, 2008 shows US President George W. Bush addressing military personnel and coalition forces at US Camp Arifjan, 60 kms (35 miles) south of Kuwait City. (AFP)

File picture dated January 12, 2008 shows US President George W. Bush addressing military personnel and coalition forces at US Camp Arifjan, 60 kms (35 miles) south of Kuwait City. (AFP)

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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