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Thursday, November 8, 2012

News That's Making News In Kuwait

If you’re a new follower of this blog, or even a loyal follower, I do go slightly off-topic on Thursdays.  Why do I do this?

To bring you, my very loyal and faithful readers/followers/stalkers, a quick peek into what’s making news headlines in Kuwaiti papers. 

After reading this blog, just think how well-informed you’ll be about the world around you! 


Opposition plans major gathering Sunday
November 8, 2012
By B Izzak, Staff Writer

The opposition has decided to stay off the streets and hold a massive gathering they expect would attract tens of thousands of Kuwaitis at Irada Square opposite the National Assembly to mark the 50th anniversary of the constitution, which they accuse the government of undermining. Former Islamist MP Waleed Al-Tabtabaei said after a meeting late Tuesday night of the opposition and youth activists that it was decided to hold a gathering rather than a procession on the anniversary of the constitution, but that will not replace future processions. Opposition figures expect record numbers to turn out for the gathering, with some hoping for as many as 250,000 people.
A day before the gathering, the government will hold its own celebrations of the constitution anniversary with an unprecedented display of fireworks. The Interior Ministry said it will close the Arabian Gulf road from its intersection with the Third Ring Road to its crossing with Al-Sour Road all day on Saturday for the occasion.

Former liberal MP Saleh Al-Mulla meanwhile called for another gathering of the opposition on Monday to draw a plan to expand the popular boycott of the election. The Popular Committee for Boycotting the Election, which was launched two days ago, has appointed coordinators in all the five constituencies to organize the election boycott by forming popular committees in the constituencies. Since its inception on Monday night, the Committee’s Twitter account has attracted more than 20,000 followers. The Committee has said that it will launch awareness campaigns to educate people why they should boycott the elections.

Read more here:

Former MP accuses opposition of seeking to ‘control the country’
November 8, 2012
By A. Saleh, Staff Writer

The current ordeal in Kuwait is not caused by an emergency decree or due to the issue of a single-vote system, but because certain parties want to Kuwait to be in a state of chaos so that they can take over the country, a former lawmaker said yesterday. “The Majority Bloc lost the support of the people after its members failed miserably to turn into statesmen,” former MP Saleh Ashour said in a statement in which he also insisted that members of the oppositionist group are “delusional if they believe they can achieve their goal of taking over and running the state.” Ashour further argued that if the opposition claims that the crisis was caused by the emergency decree “then it is important to know that nothing happened when thousands of emergency decrees were released before, some of which were rejected by the parliament.” He further urged young people to avoid allowing themselves to be used as “tools in the hands of politicians facing criminal charges who use them as pawns on the bargaining table.”

Read more here:

Sheikha offers service pro bono to Filipina rape victim – Lawyer criticizes Philippines Embassy
November 8, 2012
By Ben Garcia, Staff Writer

A Kuwaiti female human rights lawyer criticized the Philippines Embassy yesterday for not allowing her team to visit a Filipina rape victim who was temporarily sheltered at their embassy premises.

Lawyer Sheikha Fawzia Al-Sabah told the Kuwait Times that her objective was merely to extend help and lend support to the Filipina rape victim, on a pro bono basis which she said Marites (the rape victim) gladly accepted.

She said she had met Marites at her hospital bed at Mubarak Hospital, when she was recovering from the stab wound she suffered at the hands of her attacker, who was recently identified by the local authorities here as a police officer from the Traffic Police Department. After the alleged rape, Marites was stabbed on Oct 1 several times on her neck and various parts of her body with a Swiss knife by her police attacker. “She told me at that time that she wanted me to be her lawyer, and I offered my services free of charge. She faced a horrible crime and hopefully, God willing, we can help her in many ways. Much as I want to represent her as her lawyer, the embassy has already refused us access to her.

Read more here:

Kuwait and the understanding of the Dignity Movement
November 8, 2012
By Fouad Al-Obaid

For the better part of the last couple of weeks major political battles have been waged, on air, via social media channels, and for a historic first in post-liberation Kuwait: on the streets.

Many people have come up with their own opinion about the current situation where most find themselves divided between pro-current system supporters, and a loosely termed ‘opposition’. At the end of the day both parties seem to have the interest of Kuwait at heart; their differences are in the means.
On the one hand we have had a precedent when on Oct 15 ex-MP Mussalam Al-Barak (the highest elected MP in Kuwait’s history) gave a daunting speech, with an unprecedented tone, addressing HH the Amir in person, which until that point was a social taboo.

What took aback many, was the nature of the speech by which he addressed bluntly the grievances that many Kuwaitis have to His Highness’s esteemed regard, and yet it did not stop there.

In a first, a key phrase was coined “We will not allow you” defying HH in person as to his decision to change the electoral law using emergency decrees prerogatives enshrined in the constitution as per Article 71: a phrase that later was chanted by the people gathered at the speech opening up a Pandora box as to the future of Kuwaiti politics.

The decree became the talk of town as speculation even before its promulgation was rising in so far as political gerrymandering was concerned. The objective of the change was to prevent a recurrence of the 2012 Parliament that saw for the first time a clear ‘opposition’ majority.

Read more here:

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