The Cabinet on Monday approved a draft bill to strip 10 people of citizenship, in line with Article 8 of the 1959 Nationality Act. During its weekly meeting Monday, chaired by Acting Prime Minister, First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, the Cabinet reviewed the relevant documents, making sure that the 10 are not worthy of holding the Kuwaiti citizenship.
The decision announced after a Cabinet meeting did not identify those affected by the decision, but sources said they were opposition figures.
The Cabinet said the decision was based on a provision in the nationality law that allows citizenship to be revoked of those who threaten Kuwait’s security, social order or economy. Sources said among those affected were activist Nabil Al-Awadhi, who is close to the Muslim Brotherhood, and Saad Al-Ajami, a former journalist turned spokesman for the opposition Popular Action Movement.
The following according to sources are names of the Kuwaitis who lost their citizenship:
1. Abdullah Al- Mutairi;
2. Theyab Al-Otaibi;
3. Mutlaq Al-Enezi;
4. Nabil Al-Awadhi;
5. Mut’ab Al-Mutairi;
6. Sa’ad Al- Mutairi;
7. Abdullah Al-Mutairi;
8. A member of Al-Ajmi tribe;
9. Sa’ad Al- Ajmi;
10. Mohammad Al-Wushaehi.
On July 21, Kuwait revoked the citizenship of several people, including the owner of a pro-opposition television station and newspaper, Ahmad Jabr Al-Shammari, and former Islamist opposition MP Abdullah Al- Barghash along with his family members.
Human Rights Watch denounced the action in a statement on Sunday as a “crackdown on people seeking reform”. “No government has the right to strip away its people’s citizenship simply because it disapproves of them, their opinions, or their actions,” said HRW’s Joe Stork. “This is yet another downward step in Kuwait’s assault on the right to free speech,” he added, urging the government to reverse its decision.
Last month, the Cabinet said the citizenships of Barghash and his relatives were revoked because they had been granted on the basis of false information.
The meeting, held at Seif Palace, started with discussing a report from the Higher Committee of Kuwaiti Citizenship on the efforts of the Interior Ministry regarding the citizenship file, said Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs and Acting Minister of Justice Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah.
The Cabinet, on the other hand, approved a draft decree granting citizenship to 15 people, in line with Article 7 of the Nationality Act.
The 15 are children of military men who took part in repelling the attack on a procession of late Sheikh Jaber Al- Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah in 1985.
The decision followed a report by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior and Acting Minister of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs Sheikh Mohammad Al-Khalid Al-Hamad Al-Sabah. Sheikh Mohammad also briefed the Cabinet on the circumstances of the shooting at the house of MP Majed Mouss Al-Mutairi and the measures taken by the Interior Ministry.
The Cabinet condemned the “weird criminal act rejected by the society” and stressed the necessity of completing investigations to find the perpetrators. Meanwhile, the Cabinet was briefed on the rapid outbreak of Ebola in West Africa, by Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs and Acting Minister of Justice Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah Al- Mubarak Al-Sabah, who is also Acting Minister of Health.
The Cabinet was also notified of the order by His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah to provide $5 million in support of WHO efforts to face the Ebola danger.
The Cabinet also discussed the recommendations of the standing committee for youth affairs with regard to running a research center for development of youth and society as well as to the Ministry of State for Youth Affairs work to upgrade the efficiency of state bodies which serve youth.
Today’s meeting reviewed the political scene in light of reports on the overall political developments, on Arab and international levels. Kuwait has revoked the citizenship of 10 people, including activists, the government said Monday in the second such move in less than a month as part of a crackdown on dissent.