A Kuwaiti island frozen in time

Failaka Island, where hundreds of people packed up and left 25 years ago, is steeped in remnants of the Iraqi invasion.

| | War & Conflict, Arts & Culture, Middle East, Iraq, Kuwait

Failaka Island, Kuwait - About 20km off the coast of Kuwait City, tiny Failaka Island stands as a constant reminder of the Iraqi invasion a quarter-century ago.

Prior to the Gulf War, Failaka was reportedly home to about 2,000 residents, but they fled when the Iraqis invaded and most did not return. Over the years, the homes and offices they left behind have crumbled, many still scarred with bullet holes from the war.

Today, much of the island lies empty and in ruins, although a small tourism industry has emerged - with boat trips, overnight accommodations and cafes springing up on Failaka for curious sightseers. Failaka is also still used today for military exercises by the Kuwaiti army.

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