News / Middle East

Shots Fired During Iraq-Kuwait Border Protest

Iraqi soldiers conduct a patrol at sunset near the border with Kuwait in this file photo.
Iraqi soldiers conduct a patrol at sunset near the border with Kuwait in this file photo.
TEXT SIZE - +
Reuters
— Kuwait has expressed dismay to the United Nations over a protest by stone-throwing Iraqis against the demarcation of the border, state media reported, underlining lingering tensions between the Arab neighbors a decade after Saddam Hussein was overthrown.

Iraq formally accepted a U.N.-demarcated border line in 1994 after the first Gulf War - when Iraqi strongman Saddam sent his troops into Kuwait in 1990 and was forced out by a U.S.-led coalition.

But many Iraqis in the area remain opposed to it, saying the line robbed them of property and territory.

Iraqi police sources said the protesting crowd hurled stones at Iraqi security forces in the border town of Um Qasr on Monday, prompting the security forces to fire in the air to disperse them. The unrest was triggered by border signs maintenance work nearby, they said.

Kuwaiti border guards, hearing the gunshots and believing they were being targeted, opened fire at Iraqi security forces in response, Kuwaiti media reported. There were no reports of casualties on either side.

Kuwait's Foreign Ministry undersecretary, Khalid al-Jarallah, said his country has submitted a memorandum to the United Nations and to Iraq over the incident, according to Kuwait's state news agency KUNA.

"We have issued a statement expressing our dismay over the irresponsible act,'' he said. "It is an act that runs counter to the nature of brotherly relations between Kuwait and Iraq.''

Kuwait pulled its border guards out of the area after the incident "to calm the situation'', Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Rai reported on its website.

KUNA said some of the protesting Iraqis had obstructed U.N.-supervised border signs maintenance and removed the border fence between two signs.

 An Iraqi police source told Reuters that one activist was injured in the border unrest.

Leaders of both oil-producing countries have been working to improve ties in the past year, despite public wariness. The nations came to an agreement over Gulf War-era debts last year.

Iraq's foreign and transport ministers travelled on the first flight of state-run Iraqi Airways to Kuwait since 1990 last month, in a symbolic gesture hailed by officials as a sign of improving relations.

Kuwait's ruler and Iraq's prime minister have also visited each other's countries and officials have vowed to work together to maintain border markings.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: JKF from: Ottawa, Canada
March 14, 2013 11:52 AM
We can only guess who/which country is behind this new zone of friction in the ME; as things develop, we are seeing more and more instability in the ME against Sunni Muslim countries. I am surprised that it took this long for this new area of conflict to come about. We seen these conspiratorial forces driving conflicts against Sunni Muslims in Yemen, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, now Kuwait and so on; essentially as long as these conspiracies can be carried out with impunity, they will not stop.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid