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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

U.S. Marines Attacked Again

KUWAIT -- As investigators questioned detainees and looked for al-Qaida links to a deadly attack on U.S. Marines in Kuwait, American forces in that country were involved in another violent incident, the second in two days.

A Pentagon spokesman said a U.S. Army Humvee was traveling north on a highway west of Kuwait City on Wednesday when a civilian vehicle pulled alongside the military vehicle.

U.S. officials said the Americans reported that someone inside the civilian vehicle drew a gun and pointed it at them. One soldier in the Humvee fired a single shot and the civilian vehicle veered off the roadway. Later, officials said the occupants of the civilian vehicle claimed to have held only a cellphone, not a gun.

At the Pentagon, a spokesman, Navy Lieutenant Dan Hetlage said no one involved in the incident was wounded. Another official said the bullet fired by the U.S. soldier struck the hood of the civilian vehicle.

U.S. troops have trained in Kuwait for more than a decade without reported hostile encounters.

But on Tuesday, two gunmen drove up in a pickup truck and opened fire on Marines engaged in urban assault training on Failaka, an island 16 kilometers east of Kuwait City. One Marine was killed and a second was wounded. The attackers then drove to a second location and attacked again before being killed by Marines.

Kuwaiti authorities said Wednesday that they have detained four people as suspected co-conspirators in Tuesday's attack, two U.S. defense officials said in Washington.

U.S. and Kuwaiti officials labeled Tuesday's attack an act of terrorism. Officials were attempting to determine the extent of the gunmen's links to the al-Qaida network.

The gunmen -- Anas al-Kandari, 21, and his 26-year-old cousin, Jassem al-Hajiri -- had trained in Afghanistan and were angry about Israeli killings of Palestinians, a friend and relative said.

The violence has startled many in Kuwait, a close U.S. ally where people generally consider the United States a friend that liberated their country from Iraqi occupation in the 1991 Gulf War.

The Pentagon identified the slain Marine as Lance Corporal Antonio Sledd, 20, of Tampa, Florida. The wounded soldier was Lance Corporal George Simpson, 21, of Dayton, Ohio. Both men were assigned to the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit at Camp Pendleton, California.

About 200 male friends and relatives of the dead Kuwaiti men attended their burial Wednesday. Mourners attacked photographers, calling them "spies," and chased them from the area.

Al-Kandari had "chosen to walk in the footsteps of Osama bin Laden," said Mohammed al-Awadi, a cleric who knew him.

Al-Kandari spent 18 months in Afghanistan, and his cousin al-Hajiri joined him there for six months, al-Awadi said. Both returned days before the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks in the United States that are blamed on bin Laden's al-Qaida organization, the cleric said.

Al-Awadi said al-Kandari was moved by footage of Palestinians killed before the attack on the Marines and had said: "We are coming for you Americans."

White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said al-Qaida links to the shooting have not been ruled out.

In a remark carried by the official Kuwait News Agency, Defense Minister Sheik Jaber Mubarak Al Sabah said after visiting the wounded Marine that Kuwait will continue to cooperate with Washington in its war on terror.