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Religious ‘edicts’ in Kuwait encourage organ transplants

KUWAIT CITY, Aug 3, (KUNA): Kuwait encourages human organ transplants in line with humane considerations and basic Islamic principles that advocate safeguarding an saving human souls. This Kuwaiti approach was embodied with establishment of the Kuwait Transplant Society (KTS) which would celebrate its 30th anniversary on Monday.

The Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs’ Fatwa Commission has issued a fatwa (edict), essentially stipulating that a human organ can be donated from the deceased, whose main organs, namely the heart and the lungs have stopped functioning, provided that he (she) mention approval of the donation in his (her) will or approval of the heirs or the “mentors.” It says in part that a human organ can be given to the patient who is in dire need for the donation or where there is no other alternative to save his (her) life.

A human being, according to the Kuwaiti edict, can approve, after his (her) demise, donation of some of the organs, except for the sex organs or DNA transmitters, for the benefit of a patient. Dr Khaled Al-Madhkour, the head of the supreme commission for completion of Islamic Shariaa enforcement, told KUNA Islam essentially stipulates that the faithful are obliged to protect their organs and abstain from any harm to them, however he mentioned some basic rules that genuinely allow organs’ transplant for saving lives, stressing the necessity of approval of the deceased or the people closest to him (her).

Transplant is forbidden if there is any sign of life in the donor, he stressed. Moreover, organs’ trade is forbidden “for the human body is not an object for transactions, for this infringes on the human dignity.” The Kuwaiti society urges citizens to approve donation of some of their organs after death to treat patients in dire need for such organs.

It holds conventions, takes part in conferences abroad and grants awards for researchers in the domain. It also promotes Kuwait’s pioneering role in the sector of human organs transplant.

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