Thursday , September 20 2018

Euro fighter cost raises concerns

KUWAIT CITY, Aug 29: MP Kamel Al-Awadhi has forwarded queries to Deputy Premier and Defense Minister Sheikh Khalid Al-Jarrah about the cost of the Euro fighter deal. He said that in recent months, there were a lot of news and comments published in local and regional media, social networking sites and Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) about the signing of a deal to purchase 28 combat airplanes — Euro fighter Typhoon type.

He stressed these news mentioned different purchase prices depending on the methods and locations — ranging from 4.5 billion Euros to 8.7 billion Euros. He pointed out this is a huge difference — almost double, as reports on the deal remain ambiguous without official statements from the Defense Ministry to clarify the issue and present details. He wants to know whether the deal was signed with Italy or other entities, actual cost of the deal, completed procedures, next steps and reasons behind the delayed completion of this transaction considering news in this regard started to surface a year ago (September 2015).

Meanwhile, Interior and Defense Committee member MP Abdullah Al-Mayouf explained the law on granting citizenship to 4,000 applicants does not cover the children of naturalized Kuwaitis and the children of those who rendered exemplary services (great works). He said these people fall under another law on citizenship, not the law on the naturalization of 4,000 applicants which was passed by the Parliament in the previous legislative round.

He added the government, represented by the interior minister, will determine the number of applicants to be included in the next list of those who will be granted citizenship among those who participated in wars, those included in the 1965 census and other categories. He also warned against exploiting the naturalization process through the introduction of the ‘great works’ category. He clarified ‘great works’ is the correct phrase but it should be clearly defined and regulated, such that certain conditions are put in place to ensure the citizenship is granted only to those who deserve it.

He affirmed his trust in Interior Minister Sheikh Mohammed Khaled who has proven his abilities, especially since he deals with two aspects of the naturalization file — first is cancelling the citizenship of those who were naturalized through fraudulent means and second is granting citizenship to deserving applicants. He urged the Parliament and Council of Ministers to fully support the interior minister by providing adequate material and technical capabilities.

“Today, the danger is bigger than our equipment. We have the right mindset and dedicated men but we need legislation for better security controls, such as a clear law on criminalizing terrorism in order to leave no room for anyone to engage in terrorist acts to serve personal interests or because of pressure from certain parties. We need laws to stop terrorism as well as to maintain the stability and security of our country,” he concluded.

By Abubakar A. Ibrahim Arab Times Staff

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