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Thursday , January 21 2021

Court imposes fine on local cleric for anti-Shia comment

KUWAIT CITY, Nov 11: The Criminal Court ordered the Kuwaiti cleric Othman Al-Khamees to pay a fine of KD 20,000 in a case filed against him by the Public Prosecution based on a petition submitted by Attorney Hani Hussein to the State Security Department over the allegation that Al-Khamees made an offensive remark about the Shiite sect.

Attorney Hani Hussein petitioned the State Security Department, accusing Al-Khamees of violating national unity by depicting Shiites as unfaithful during an interview broadcasted in the month of Ramadan. In a separate case, the Court of Appeals cancelled the verdict issued by the Court of First Instance, which sentenced the Kuwaiti blogger Abdulrahman Al- Ajmi to four years jail term with hard labor.

The court instead acquitted the defendant of allegedly defaming His Highness the Amir of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Al-Ajmi was arrested in March for inciting the public against the ruling authority, for defaming HH the Amir, expressing hostility against Saudi Arabia and spreading false information.

Barghash nationality: The Court of Appeals Tuesday decided the First Instance Court had no jurisdiction to look into the case relating to the withdrawal of citizenship from “Al-Bargash family”. The First Instance court ruled against the decision to withdraw the citizenship and ordered Government to pay temporary compensation of KD 5,001 to the family.

In Tuesday’s verdict, the court stated that Al-Bargash (the head of the family) did not receive Kuwaiti nationality until after his death, which means his children did not naturalize on paternal basis. Therefore, the citizenship of his children was granted by the concerned administration, and Article two of citizenship law does not apply in this case. The court affirmed that Government has no right to withdraw citizenship from any citizen who received it through paternal basis.

The case was filed on the assumption that Al-Bargash family received their citizenship paternally, and the citizenship of a ruling family member was reinstated based on the fact that his father was a Kuwaiti. In the previous sessions, the Government refused to give the reasons behind the withdrawal of the citizenship of the Bargash family, maintaining that the court had no jurisdiction to look at the case, and “what the government withdrew was the citizenship certificate and not the citizenship itself”.

By Jaber Al-Hamoud Al-Seyassah Staff and Agencies

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