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Kuwaiti businessman shot dead in Istanbul

Iran satellite TV head also killed in armed attack

ISTANBU: Turkish security officials inspect the site of an armed attack in Istanbul’s Maslak neighborhood in which Kuwaiti businessman Mohammad Metab Al-Shalahi and his Iranian partner were shot dead on Saturday.

KUWAIT: A Kuwaiti businessman was shot dead in Istanbul late Saturday together with his Iranian business partner. The citizen Mohammad Metab Al-Shalahi was shot dead in an armed attack on his car as he was in the company of the Iranian resident in Turkey.

Kuwaiti Consul in Istanbul Mohammed Al-Mohammed confirmed the death of the citizen. In a press statement, Mohammad said that the consulate in Istanbul is closely monitoring the situation and following up investigations into the killing of the Kuwaiti citizen. It is also making necessary arrangements to repatriate his body to Kuwait.

Turkish security agencies have launched an inquiry to track down the killers and investigate the motive behind the crime. The citizen was reportedly in his four-wheel vehicle with his Iranian friend Saeed Karimian, a member of the Iranian opposition who owns TV channels and other media outlets.

According to some Kuwaiti media sources, the Turkish authorities reported 30 shots – three killed the Kuwaiti businessman and 27 targeted his Iranian friend.

According to Turkey’s Dogan news agency, GEM TV founder and a British citizen of Iranian origin Saeed Karimian and Al-Shalahi were driving in Istanbul’s Maslak neighborhood after 8pm (1700 GMT) on Saturday when their car was blocked by a jeep and shots were fired, Dogan said.

Karimian was found dead by emergency services arriving at the scene, Dogan said while his Kuwaiti friend was taken to hospital but could not be revived. Two masked shooters got out of the jeep before opening fire, Hurriyet Daily added. The jeep was later found abandoned and burned. Istanbul police declined to comment on the shooting when contacted by Reuters.

Footage broadcast by another news agency showed the targeted vehicle in Maslak with at least one bullet hole through the window. It also showed that the suspected getaway car had been turned into a burned out wreck after being left in the hard shoulder of a road and set on fire.

Dogan quoted the mayor of Istanbul’s Sariyer district as saying initial police findings suggested the shooting may have prompted by a financial disagreement involving Karimian. GEM TV is known for entertainment satellite channels that dub foreign films and Western television programs into Farsi for Iranians. It also produces movies and TV series. – Agencies

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