Kuwaiti authorities have arrested a Syrian businessman who is close to the head of the Syrian regime, Bashar al-Assad.
Mazen Tarazi was arrested late Monday at his offices at Al-Hadaf magazine, his lawyer Badr Al Yacoub told Agence France Presse, saying he did not yet know the reasons behind his client’s arrest.
Al-Qabas newspaper said on its website that Tarazi was accused of money laundering and printing texts without authorization.
It quoted security sources as saying that the raid took three hours, during which security forces confiscated computers and phones belonging to Tarazi, before arresting the man.
AFP said that Tarazi was a longtime resident of Kuwait and owned a publishing and advertising firm in partnership with a high-profile local businessman, Ahmad Al Jarallah.
Jarallah confirmed to AFP that police had raided his offices on Monday night and arrested Tarazi’s secretary and two Al Hadaf magazine employees.
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The Syrian businessman is on an EU blacklist of Syrian nationals who have been banned from entry to European states and whose assets have been frozen over their role in the Syria war.
Born in Damascus in 1962, Tarazi is a Syrian businessman who publicly supports Assad’s regime. He also makes contributions to the so-called “martyrs schools” of the regular forces. He participated in demonstrations in the United States in support of the Syrian regime.
There was no immediate explanation from the Kuwaiti authorities on the reason for his arrest.
By Merza al-Khuwaldi
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