November 19, 2015 / 6:49 PM / 3 years ago

Kuwait says detains group supplying funds, weapons to IS

DUBAI (Reuters) - Kuwaiti authorities have arrested members of an extremist network that supplied funds and weapons, including rockets, to Islamic State militants, state news agency KUNA quoted the Interior Ministry as saying on Thursday.

The group included a Lebanese, an Egyptian, five Syrians, two Australians and a Kuwaiti national, KUNA said.

KUNA said one of the members coordinated the transfer of militants abroad and was a financier who sent money to accounts in Turkey and Australia. Another member was a weapons dealer, KUNA said.

The Gulf Arab country suffered its worst militant attack at the hands of Islamic State in June, when a suicide bomber blew himself up inside the Imam al-Sadeq mosque in Kuwait City, killing 27 people.

Kuwait cracked down on Islamist militants after the bombing. Officials say the bombing was aimed at stoking strife between Sunnis and Shi’ites in the majority Sunni Muslim state, where the two sects have usually coexisted in peace.

The United States and other Western countries have criticised Kuwait for what they have described as a permissive approach to militant financing.

Reporting by Ali Abdelaty and Katie Paul; Writing by Yara Bayoumy; Editing by Janet Lawrence

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