Kuwaiti couple sues ministry after son dies in suicide attack

April 26, 2011

A Kuwaiti couple is suing the interior ministry of their country for alleged negligence that led to the death of their son, according to reports in a Kuwaiti daily.

In an unprecedented move in Kuwait’s history, the couple is taking the ministry to court after accusing it of failing to rehabilitate their son upon his return from Guantanamo prison and to prevent him from going to Iraq where he was involved in a suicide attack in which he was killed.

“The couple wants the interior ministry to pay them Kuwaiti Dinars5,001 (Dh66.660) as initial compensation for the mistakes it made,” Khalid Al Mahhan, the couple’s lawyer, said, quoted by Al Rai daily on Monday. “The ministry should have set up a dedicated centre to help rehabilitate the former Guantanamo inmates and should not have allowed him to leave the country,” he added.

The couple said their son was released in 2007 from Guantanamo and returned to Kuwait where he blamed the Americans for imprisoning him and asked the Kuwaitis to help him.

“I was made to suffer for four years in Guantanamo where I was imprisoned without any reason or charges,” he reportedly told a Kuwaiti daily then. “Kuwait is my country and it should help me because I had gone through a difficult period.”

According to the couple, the interior ministry did not provide the required care for the former prisoners who returned home.

They said they were shocked to learn through a Wikileaks diplomatic cable that Interior Minister Shaikh Jaber Khaled Al Sabah reportedly told the US ambassador to Kuwait in February 2009 that former Guantanamo detainees should be dropped in “Afghanistan, in the middle of the war zone” where they were picked up.

However, the claims were disowned by Kuwait.

“The interior minister has denied the report as mere lies,” Kuwaiti foreign minister Shaikh Mohammad Al Sabah told reporters.

The couple said their son eventually left Kuwait for the northern Iraqi city of Mosul where he blew himself up.

According to the US military, “although 90 per cent of all suicide bombers in Iraq were foreigners, historically, Kuwaitis have comprised less than one per cent of foreign fighters in Iraq”. The court will look into the case on Thursday, Al Rai said.




About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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