Kuwaiti authorities will deport without trial 17 Egyptians and six Syrians after they were involved in a mass brawl over a commercial dispute, an information ministry official said Tuesday.
The official denied media reports that the men were being deported after allegedly beating up a Kuwaiti citizen. The reports had also put the number of Egyptians at 18. “The men participated in brawl and damaged vehicles in an industrial area near Kuwait City,” the information ministry official told AFP. “There was no (Kuwaiti) citizen involved in the case,” he said, requesting anonymity.
Citing a security source, Al-Anbaa newspaper reported on Tuesday that the interior ministry had begun procedures to cancel the men’s residency permits and deport them. Their families were also to be deported. The Gulf state deports thousands of foreigners every year for a variety of offences, from brawling to traffic violations to failing to renew residency permits.
The measure against the 23 came after Interior Minister Sheikh Mohammad Khaled Al-Sabah, a senior member of Kuwait’s ruling family, ordered the arrest of the foreigners involved in the brawl. A short video of the incident was posted on the Internet on Sunday, showing a group of men carrying sticks and chasing a man.
The man was wearing Kuwaiti national dress, but the ministry official said he was in fact one of the Syrians who was to be deported. The official provided no further information on the incident, including on the causes of the brawl.
The Kuwaiti Cabinet in its weekly meeting Monday praised “decisive security measures” taken against a group of expatriates involved in the incident. The men are being deported without a trial or a court order, under powers legally accorded to the interior ministry.
A security source said the suspects have to leave the country after the Ministry of Interior took a decision to cancel their residence permit and also the residence permits of those under their sponsorship — wives and children. In response to a question about children who may be studying, the source said the law is clear. People who don’t respect the laws of the country don’t deserve to live here and that means all those who are under their sponsorship.
The source stressed the Ministry of Interior is not responsible for the conditions of people who do not respect the country’s laws. Of the Syrians, given the current condition in their country, the sources said like the Egyptians they too will have to leave the country and return to Syria or any country which is willing to receive them, but the main thing is they cannot continue to live in the country.
In response to another question if there was any pressure to release the suspects, the authorities said, yet in one case there was wasta but the mediator was told in clear terms that those who violate the country’s laws have no place here. One source added even human rights organizations tried to intervene but the message was clear there is no room for those who do not respect the law to stay in Kuwait.
Source: Arab Times