By Mary Fanning and Alan Jones
Gulftainer co-owner Sheikh Dr Sultan Bin Muhammed Al Qasimi, the Ruler of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, provided Russian arms trafficker Viktor Bout, known as the ‘Merchant of Death’, with a shadowy weapons smuggling air base at the Sharjah Airport. The Sharjah Airport is controlled by the powerful Emir.
Bout used aircraft based at the Sharjah Airport to smuggle arms of U.S. adversaries and terrorists such as the Taliban. Bout trafficked weapons to some of the world’s most dangerous hot spots, including Mogadishu, Somalia, site of the infamous ‘Black Hawk Down’ Battle of Mogadishu.
“Gulftainer is owned by two shareholders, HH [His Highness] Sheikh Sultan Al Qassimi, the Ruler of Sharjah and Mr. Hamid Dhia Jafar,” according to World Bank International Finance Corporation (IFC) documents first uncovered in 2016 by The American Report.
The Pentagon placed Hamid Dhia Jafar’s brother and business partner, Iraqi nuclear physicist Dr. Jafar Dhia Jafar, on U.S. Central Command’s Operation Iraqi Freedom Blacklist of Saddam Hussein regime senior officials wanted for capture or kill.