Assistant Undersecretary for Citizenship and Passport Affairs Major General Sheikh Mazen Al-Jarrah has affirmed that the ministry insists on activating the articles of the law related to expatriates in Kuwait particularly Article 15 which links the validity of the expatriates’ residence permits to the validity of their passports, reports Al-Rai daily.
He revealed that the concerned departments have started activating the law through the automated system which links all departments of Residence Affairs to share the passports’ information.
Major General Al-Jarrah stressed the lack of justification for non-activation of such a law during the past many years, adding that Kuwait is not a ‘grocery store’ and every individual has to work based on the position of the country and institutions.
He revealed that objections were raised over the activation of this law as many individuals consider it as a new law issued by Ministry of Interior and are looking for ways to block its implementation. However, he insisted that the law will be applied without succumbing to any pressure, adding that the department will soon activate the law and collect the fines and dues.
Major General Al-Jarrah said, “Since this law was approved many years ago, we are responsible for applying it but we are not responsible for any negligence committed in the past”.
He disclosed, “Linking all the concerned departments of Residence Affairs has revealed the fact that many expatriates hold expired passports and valid residence permits. They will be given a grace period of two months to update their data; however, a fine of KD 2 will be imposed on them for each day they violate the law”.
He further disclosed that there are about 100,000 violators of Residency Law who have been given more than one opportunity since 2006 to legally rectify their positions, adding, “Since most of them did not take advantage of such grace periods, it is useless to grant them any further grace periods”.
Regarding Syrian expatriates, Major General Al-Jarrah clarified that a study is currently being carried out to find a mechanism for dealing with their issue under their special circumstances, revealing that the Syrian embassy might re-open its doors soon to take care of Syrians’ affairs, as per the information obtained from Ministry of Foreign Affairs.