Revision criminalizes cross-dressing

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KUWAIT CITY, Feb 21: MPs Osama Al-Shaheen and Abdulaziz Al-Saqaabi submitted a bill on amending Penal Code No. 16/1960 by adding Article 189 bis to criminalize the act of a man who dresses like a woman or uses makeup or cosmetics to look like woman or undergoes surgery or uses medicines – whether licensed or not – to change the appearance to that of the opposite gender and vice versa.

MP Osama Al- Shaheen

This is the second response to the decision of the Constitutional Court to declare Article 198 of the above-mentioned law unconstitutional. The bill mandates the concerned investigation entity to refer whoever violates the proposed article to the Forensic Medicine Department which will then release a report within 24 hours.

Those proven guilty will be imprisoned for two years and fine ranging from KD3,000 to KD5,000 or any of these penalties. If the accused is a public sector worker or occupies an academic post, the penalty includes three years imprisonment and fine ranging from KD3,000 to KD7,000 or any of these two penalties. In all cases, the accused is obligated to remove the opposite gender appearance.

On the other hand, MP Abdullah Al-Turaiji forwarded queries to Minister of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs Essa Al-Kandari about the apartments granted to expatriate Imams and Muezzins; particularly the information about an expatriate Imam who was granted two apartments – one for himself and another for his daughter-in-law and her children – even if the said Imam is already above the legal age requirement.

MP Abdulaziz Al-Saqa’abi asked Minister of Information and Culture Hamad Rouhaldeen about the advantages of implementing Cyber Media Law No. 8/2016. He wants to know if any of the neighboring countries is implementing the same law and steps taken to implement Article Three of the law that mandates the State to support the development of cyber media.

He requested for copies of the record of websites and cyber media accounts including the names of the managers and workers as per Article Four of the law, report on the rejected and approved requests for launching cyber media accounts, reasons for rejection or approval of each request, average period for obtaining a license, and number of cancelled licenses. By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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