10 year sentence for twitter abuse against Saudi Arabia and Bahrain upheld
A court in Kuwait on Tuesday adjourned the trial of three former lawmakers on charges of abusing the king of Jordan to January 7.
The case against ex-MPs Musallam Al Barrak, Mubarak Al Waalan and Salem Al Namlan was filed by the Kuwaiti foreign ministry for allegedly disseminating false information about the domestic situation in Kuwait with the purpose of undermining the country’s interests. The former lawmakers, who also faced charges of taking part in an illegal rally, rejected the charges.
Al Barrak reportedly criticised King Abdullah and Jordan last year for allegedly sending troops to quell demonstrations organised by the opposition to call for revoking a decision that amended the 2006 electoral law.
Al Barrak’s allegations about the presence of Jordanian troops in Kuwait to suppress demonstrations were dismissed as “untrue” and “lacking credibility” by the Kuwaiti foreign ministry.
“We categorically reject the claims made by former lawmaker Musallam Al Barrak to the media,” the ministry said. “Kuwait rejects targeting its deep-rooted fraternal relations with Jordan and condemns any abuse of its leaders.”
In a separate case, the court postponed the trial of 70 Kuwaitis, including nine former lawmakers, on charges of storming the parliament building to December 9.
On Monday, a rights activist in Kuwait said an appeals court upheld a 10-year prison sentence against a social media commentator for posts considered offensive to Islam and the rulers of fellow Gulf states Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia led a Gulf military force in 2011 that helped Bahrain battle an opposition uprising seeking a greater political voice.
Activist Nawaf Al Handel says the appeals court refused to lower the June 2012 sentence against Hamad Al Naqi.
Al Naqi, a Shiite, claims his Twitter account was hacked.
Prosecutors say Al Naqi insulted Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) and the leaders of the two Gulf states.