Panel no to citizenship for non-Muslims

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‘Religion of State Islam, Islamic law main source of legislation’

KUWAIT CITY, Dec 27: The parliamentary Interior and Defense Committee on Thursday rejected the proposal to grant Kuwaiti citizenship to non-Muslims in accordance with Article Two of the Constitution which stipulates: “The religion of the State is Islam and Islamic law shall be the main source of legislation.”

The Legal and Legislative Affairs Committee previously approved the proposal on grounds that the Nationality Law contravenes Article 29 of the Constitution stating, “People are equal in human dignity, public rights and obligations before the law.

There shall be no differentiation between them due to race, origin, language or religion.” The committee then referred the proposal to its interior and defense counterpart.

Interior and Defense Committee Chairman MP Askar Al-Enizi confirmed that Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Lieutenant General Sheikh Khaled Al-Jarrah attended the meeting, during which he voiced the government’s rejection of the proposal on the same grounds while noting that this situation is similar to what happened in the 1981 National Assembly.

The committee also discussed proposals related to granting Kuwaiti citizenship to foreign women whose Kuwaiti husbands died without applying for citizenship for their wives.

These proposals are considered remedies to the situation of over 400 widows, considering they will be granted citizenship once the eldest child reaches the age of maturity.

In addition, the proposal to establish the anti-narcotics public authority was withdrawn from the committee’s agenda upon the request of the concerned minister as the government intends to further review the proposal.

On the other hand, the Human Rights, Women and Family Affairs Committee finalized its reports on bills regarding the civil and social rights of Bedouns. Once these bills are approved, any concerned individual will be allowed to submit complaints or notifications on the issue directly to the committee.

In a press statement at the National Assembly Media Center, Committee Chairman MP Adel Al-Damkhi revealed the Legal and Legislative Affairs Committee presented seven bills in the last legislative term, but it took time to finalize the reports as the committee was keen on meeting the concerned officials and Bedoun rights activists to consider their inputs.

Furthermore, Al-Damkhi disclosed that the committee will soon visit the Psychiatric Hospital to assess the treatment of mental patients in preparation for the discussion on the Mental Health Bill on Jan 8, 2019. This will be the first of many visits which include prisons, detention centers, welfare homes, shelters and foreign labor centers to follow up the recommendations approved by the Assembly and work being done by the Ministry of Interior and its correctional institutions.

By Ahmed Al-Naqeeb Arab Times Staff

This news has been read 43757 times!

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