In an unprecedented scene, three MPs brought their Kalashnikov submachine guns to the National Assembly building yesterday and handed it over to a special team from the interior ministry working to collect unlicensed firearms. MPs Nabeel Al-Fadhl, Abdulhameed Dashti and Abdullah Al-Tameemi said they wanted to support the interior ministry's campaign to collect unlicensed firearms in implementation of a law that became effective less than two weeks ago.
Under the law, a four-month grace period is offered for people to surrender firearms voluntarily, and after that interior ministry teams have the right to raid and search homes and property for firearms. People caught with unlicensed firearms after the grace period face jail sentences of several years, in addition to hefty fines.
Both Dashti and Tameemi held their Klashnikov high as they entered the Assembly building and then told reporters that the law was passed by the Assembly and it should be first applied to Assembly members. Interior Minister Sheikh Mohammad Al-Khaled Al-Sabah and head of the Assembly's interior and defense committee MP Abdullah Maayouf welcomed the move and called on more MPs to follow suit to set an example for the people. Tameemi said that he took the initiative in response to the law and in order to emphasize that only the state should have firearms and not the people.