Kuwait denies spying charges, says pair was on media assignment

November 14, 2011

The two Kuwaitis arrested by Iran on spying charges were in fact on a social programme assignment for a private Kuwaiti TV channel, a Kuwaiti foreign ministry official said.

The official told Kuwait News Agency (Kuna) that the Kuwaiti citizens, who were arrested in Abadan and accused of espionage, were working for a private TV channel and were assigned to film a social programme.

The two citizens “had obtained the required visa from the Iranian authorities concerned to carry out their task,” the source said, quoted by Kuna.

Kuwait has started contacts the Iranian authorities to clarify the situation and secure the citizens’ release, the source said.

Suspected espionage activity

On Sunday, Iran’s semiofficial Fars News Agency said two Kuwaiti citizens were detained in Abadan for suspected espionage activities and on possession of “spying equipment”, quoting Bahram Ilkhaszadeh, the governor of Abadan, a town close to Kuwait.

However, according to Kuwaiti daily Al Rai, the two Kuwaitis were Adel Al Yahya, a lawyer who presented a programme on Al Adala (Justice) TV and Raed Waleed, a cameraman.

The pair was working on a documentary on the former wives of Kuwaiti nationals who had been abandoned by their husbands, the daily said. A similar documentary was made on Egyptian women who had been married with Kuwaiti men.

According to the daily, the duo left for Abadan from the Kuwaiti port of Al Shuwaikh on November 10.

Kuwaiti MP Mubarak Al Waalan denied the report that the two Kuwaiti nationals were spies.

“They were on an assignment for a private television channel,” he said. “I have already contacted Khalid Al Jarallah, the foreign ministry undersecretary, who has expressed keen interest in securing their prompt release,” he said, quoted by the daily.





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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