Council OK’s proposal to amend Article 8 of the Nationality Law
KUWAIT CITY, July 18: The Council of Ministers has approved the amendment to Article 8 of Amiri Decree No. 15 of 1959 regarding the Nationality Law concerning the granting of Kuwaiti citizenship to the wife of a citizen after 18 years of marriage, reports Al-Anba daily.
In the past, a foreign woman married to a Kuwaiti did not get the Kuwaiti nationality unless she made known of her intention to the Minister of Interior to acquire the Kuwaiti nationality, provided the duration of the marriage was not less than five years from the date of making known her intention.
If the marriage ended before the end of the period referred to, due to death or divorce, and the foreign woman has a son or children from her Kuwaiti husband and prefers to stay in the country, she may be granted the citizenship’s upon a report to be submitted by the interior minister.
This matter will be discussed by the Interior and Defense Committee of the National Assembly following which it will be approved or rejected.
The committee will prepare a report and refer it to the National Assembly for discussion, and put to vote. The daily polled the views of a number of law professors and lawyers to know what they think about the amendment to the law.
The head of the general law department at the Faculty of Law of the Kuwait University Dr Ibrahim Al-Hamoud said the Kuwaiti legislator sees many women marrying young Kuwaiti men for a very short period in order to acquire the Kuwaiti nationality which then will end in divorce after getting the nationality.
He said, the Kuwaiti legislator sees in this way she cannot be integrated into the Kuwaiti society given the short duration of her marriage and remains still alien to this country so the decision to grant the foreign wife a Kuwaiti nationality after 18 years of marriage, in order to fill the vacuum of excuses and decided to amend Article 8, explaining that the 18-year period can integrate this woman into the Kuwaiti society on the one hand and preempt the greed of some non- Kuwaiti women of mere obtaining the nationality and not to form a stable family.
Al-Hamoud stressed the legislator wanted this amendment in the law not to make nationality itself a goal just to get the benefits. He pointed out that the legislator succeeded in blocking the greed of some women to obtain Kuwaiti nationality, saying a citizen who marries a woman for a certain period in return for helping her to get the citizenship, had to be stopped abruptly to preserve the Kuwaiti nationality and not to make the citizenship a kind of commodity.
For her part, lawyer Areej Hamadeh told the daily the Kuwaiti Nationality Law No. 15 of 1959 regulates the granting of Kuwaiti nationality. Article 1 states that the lawful Kuwaitis were the settlers in Kuwait before 1920, in the ordinary day until the date of publication of this law. Among these controls is Article 8, which stipulates that the marriage of a foreign woman to a Kuwaiti should not become Kuwaiti unless she declares her desire to acquire this nationality and the marriage continues for a period of five years from the date of declaring her desire to do so.
Hamada added: The Cabinet approved at its weekly meeting a draft law amending Article 8 of Amiri Decree No. 15 of 1959 on the Nationality Law to increase the period to 18 years instead of five years. The naturalization of foreign women married to Kuwaiti is one of the types of random naturalization, because the five-year period was small and helped some to abuse the naturalization in anticipation of the advantages of Kuwaiti nationality and not for the love of a Kuwaiti who married her, so in many cases, the wife requested divorce once she obtained Kuwaiti nationality. The main objective of Kuwaiti marriage for some is to obtain Kuwaiti nationality.