Fighters from the Free Syrian Army's Al Rahman legion fire a weapon in the Mleha suburb of Damascus during what the rebel fighters said was an offensive against them by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-AssadReuters

Kuwait's justice and Islamic affairs minister Nayef al-Ajmi, accused of fundraising for terrorist groups in Syria, has resigned citing health reasons.

Al-Ajmi strongly denies having any links to jihadi groups fighting in Syria and rejected the claims against him as "baseless and groundless".

The minister claims that he "asked to be relieved of his post because of health problems which predated the accusation that he backed terror", Al-Rai newspaper reported.

The US Treasury Undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence David Cohen had previously said that al-Ajmi has "a history for promoting jihad in Syria", and that images of his face had been used on fundraising material for the al-Qaida-linked Jabhat al-Nusra militia.

Cohen described al-Ajmi's appointment to the Kuwaiti cabinet as a "step in the wrong direction".

Al-Ajmi agrees he has taken part in fundraising activities relating to the humanitarian crisis in Syria and its surrounding countries but strenuously denied Cohen's allegations that the funds were for al-Nusra.

Kuwait is unique in that its leadership does not openly support rebel militias in Syria.

Both Saudi Arabia and Qatar have publicly backed rebel groups and have provided money and weapons to the opposition, although they have fallen out over which militias to back.

Kuwait, on the other hand, has focused its efforts on fundraising for Syrian refugees fleeing the conflict.

The Gulf kingdom has donated more than $70m (£42m, €51m) to United Nations fundraising appeals while many millions more have been channelled into supporting refugees through private donations.