Assets of French tanker blast 'banker' frozen

3rd March 2005, Comments 0 comments

KUWAIT CITY, March 3 (AFP) - The Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK) has ordered local banks, financial companies and money exchange firms to freeze the assets of a citizen suspected of financing terrorism, a newspaper reported Thursday.

KUWAIT CITY, March 3 (AFP) - The Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK) has ordered local banks, financial companies and money exchange firms to freeze the assets of a citizen suspected of financing terrorism, a newspaper reported Thursday.

CBK also ordered a freeze on accounts and financial activities of Muhsin al-Fadhli, who is being hunted by Kuwaiti police for suspected links to Islamist militants involved in deadly gun battles with security forces in January, Al-Qabas said.

Fadhli is also suspected of raising money for an anti-American insurgency in Iraq and financing a 2002 bombing of a French tanker off the coast of Yemen.

The United Nations and United States last month froze Fadhli's assets and designated him a supporter of terrorism.

The United Nations also added Fadhli to a list of known terrorists tied to Osama bin Laden's Al-Qaeda network and the deposed Taliban radical Islamic movement that ruled Afghanistan until late 2001.

Fadhli is seen as a key fundraiser for Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the elusive leader of the Iraqi insurgency that has been gathering strength in recent months, targeting not only US troops but also members of Iraq's fledgling security forces and other perceived collaborators.

The CBK order was issued despite Kuwait's court of appeals acquitting Fadhli last month of charges of financing the Iraqi insurgency. The acquittal is likely to be challenged before the supreme court.

According to US officials, Fadhli is believed to have used his connections in Kuwait to raise money for the October 6, 2002 attack on the French tanker Limburg that nearly sent the ship to the bottom of the sea.

The suicide bombing left one crew member dead, 12 others injured and breached a hole in the tanker's hull, causing the release of 50,000 barrels of crude oil into the ocean.

Fadhli cut his teeth by fighting alongside the Taliban and Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan as well as separatist rebels in the breakaway Russian republic of Chechnya, where US officials said he had received training in the use of firearms, anti-aircraft guns and explosives.

© AFP

Subject: French News

0 Comments To This Article