16 thoughts on “Maid’s suicide attempt in Kuwait

    • Yes, indeed. Work conditions for foreign housemaids and other workers in Kuwait and other Gulf monarchies are often bad. If you click on the links in the blog post, there is more information about that.

    • A psychiatrist once said: “A suicide attempt is an attempt to live”. It may have been an attempt to dramatically get attention for how bad her situation was. On the other hand, the attempt very nearly succeeded, so there may just have been a slight miscalculation of the insecticide dose.

  1. Pingback: Mass demonstration against Bahraini, Saudi dictators | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Kuwait daily cautious after sectarian ban lifted

    Sun May 20, 2012 9:58am EDT

    * Paper was banned for backing Shi’ites in Sunni-led states

    * Will limit coverage after 3-month suspension ends

    * Kuwait wary of protests in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia

    KUWAIT, May 20 (Reuters) – A Kuwaiti newspaper that was temporarily banned for inciting sectarian strife was back in print on Sunday, saying it would limit its coverage of protests by Shi’ite Muslims in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

    Privately owned Al-Dar newspaper was suspended for three months in March after a court objected to articles supporting Shi’ite Muslim communities and activists in the Sunni Muslim-led states of Kuwait, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, its editor said.

    Although Kuwait has largely been spared the sectarian violence and pro-democracy uprisings seen elsewhere in the region, it is concerned tensions could still erupt among its own sizable Shi’ite minority.

    Kuwaiti authorities have been closely watching Shi’ite-led protests in Bahrain and unrest in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia, home to more than two million minority Shi’ites.

    “We will be careful, especially on topics about Saudi Arabians and Bahrainis,” Al-Dar editor Hussein al-Sultan told Reuters.

    “We will publish any articles about human rights in Bahrain if Amnesty International or Human Rights Watch publishes something. But we are not going further than this.”

    A spokesman for Bahrain’s interior ministry referred inquiries to officials at the information ministry, who were not immediately available for comment. The information ministry oversees regulation of local media coverage.

    Shi’ites make up about one third of Kuwait’s 1.1 million nationals and vocal members can be found in senior positions in parliament, media and business.

    Although Kuwaitis enjoy greater freedom of expression than citizens elsewhere in the region and have access to a comparatively outspoken press, the state can censor publications it deems a threat to national security.

    In March a court told Sultan he had to pay a 1,000 Kuwaiti dinar ($3,600) fine or face six months in prison over the sectarianism charges. This was extended to a one-year suspended prison sentence by a higher court on May 14, he said.

    “If I have any other charges in the meantime, they will apply the jail sentence,” he said, adding that the paper had asked Kuwait’s highest court to scrap the jail penalty.

    Lawmakers and analysts in major oil producer Kuwait have warned of a rise in sectarian tensions in the country, citing a series of cases involving Twitter.

    A Kuwaiti Shi’ite charged with defaming the Prophet Mohammad on Twitter as well as insulting the rulers of Bahrain and Saudi Arabia will stand trial on Monday, according to his lawyer. (Reporting by Sylvia Westall; Editing by Sami Aboudi and Andrew Heavens)

  3. MP files motion to grill Bahrain [probly meant: Kuwait] labour minister

    Al Rujaib to face questions over malpractices at cooperative societies and fake companies

    By Habib Toumi, Bureau Chief

    Published: 15:14 June 4, 2012

    Manama A second lawmaker has filed a motion to grill Kuwait’s social affairs and labour minister in a new indication of the difficult relations between the parliament and the cabinet.
    Parliament member Riyadh Al Adsani said that the quizzing motion against Ahmad Al Rujaib revolved around five topics that included alleged irregularities at the Orphans Care, deterioration of the sports situation in the country, bogus companies, weak oversight and malpractices involving the operations of cooperative societies.
    Last month, MP Al Saifi Mubarak Al Saifi filed a motion to grill Al Rujaib. However, he said that his topics differed from those by Al Adsani and refused to accept a possible merger of the motions.
    The existence of two grilling motions against the same minister is reminiscent of the case of Al Shamali, the former finance minister who had to face two motions before one of the MPs withdrew his move. The minister faced the grilling, but resigned afterwards.

    Backed by solid evidence

    Al Adsani yesterday told reporters that his motion was backed by solid evidence and that it would be taken up by the parliament at its session on June 19.
    Sources said that the parliament would announce Al Adsani’s grilling motion at its session tomorrow as part of routine procedures.
    The flurry of questioning cabinet members could produce new drama after MP Obaid Al Wasmi hinted at a possible motion to quiz Prime Minister Shaikh Jaber Al Mubarak Al Sabah over press reports suggesting that the government was likely to rebuff the Jaber University and anti-blasphemy draft laws.
    The draft for the anti-blasphemy law that stipulated the death penalty for insulting God, or Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) or companions or wife, was last month supported by 41 members of the parliament dominated by Islamist and tribal lawmakers.
    However, the draft needs to be endorsed by the Emir.

    http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/kuwait/mp-files-motion-to-grill-bahrain-labour-minister-1.1031608

  4. Kuwaiti gets 10 years for Twitter blasphemy

    Lawyer: Sentence was the maximum that 26-year-old man could have received

    By Sylvia Westall
    updated 6/4/2012 9:45:50 AM ET

    KUWAIT — A Kuwaiti man was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Monday after he was convicted of endangering state security by insulting the Prophet Mohammad and the Sunni Muslim rulers of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain on social media.

    Shi’ite Muslim Hamad al-Naqi pleaded innocent at the start of the trial last month, saying he did not post the messages and that his Twitter account had been hacked.

    The written verdict, delivered by Judge Hisham Abdullah, found Naqi guilty of all charges, a court secretary told Reuters. The sentence was the maximum that 26-year-old Naqi could have received, his lawyer Khaled al-Shatti said.

    The judge found him guilty of insulting the Prophet, the Prophet’s wife and companions, mocking Islam, provoking sectarian tensions, insulting the rulers of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain and misusing his mobile phone to spread the comments.

    “The prison sentence is long but we have the chance to appeal,” Shatti said.

    Under Kuwaiti law, the defense can file an appeal within 20 days of the verdict and jail sentences have been reduced in the past for similar convictions.

    The civil plaintiff arguing the case against Naqi, as well as some Kuwaiti politicians, had called for Naqi to be executed in a case that stoked sectarian tensions in the Gulf state.

    “This verdict is a deterrent to those who insult the Prophet Mohammad, his companions and the mothers of the believers,” civil plaintiff Dowaem al-Mowazry said in a text message.

    He had argued in court that Naqi must be made an example of.

    Dozens of Sunni Muslim activists and lawmakers protested against Naqi shortly after his arrest and he was attacked in jail by a fellow inmate, according to the Interior Ministry.

    Sectarian tensions

    Naqi did not appear in court on Monday. He was in the central prison where he has been held since his arrest in March, the court secretary said. He appeared in previous sessions in a wooden and metal cage, guarded by armed men in black balaclavas.

    The activists who protested against him accused Naqi of links to Shi’ite regional power Iran, something he has denied.

    Shi’ites are thought to number between 20-30 percent of Kuwait’s 1.1 million nationals. Vocal members can be found in senior positions in parliament, media and business.

    Although Kuwait has largely avoided the sectarian violence and pro-democracy uprisings seen elsewhere in the region, it is concerned its Shi’ite minority may turn restive.

    Authorities have been closely watching Shi’ite-led protests in Bahrain and unrest in eastern Saudi Arabia, home to more than two million minority Shi’ites.

    Naqi’s lawyer Shatti argued that even if his client had written the remarks, he would be guilty of a “crime of opinion”, not of threatening national security, which carried the 10-year jail term.

    Kuwait’s parliament, where opposition Islamists have grown in influence, endorsed a legal amendment last month that would make insulting God and the Prophet Mohammad by Muslims punishable by death instead of the current maximum penalty of 10 years in jail.

    Sheikh Sabah recently blocked a proposal by 31 of the 50 elected members of parliament to amend the constitution to make all legislation in the Gulf Arab state comply with sharia law, suggesting he is willing to resist pressure from Islamist lawmakers.

    (Additional reporting by Mahmoud Harby and Ahmed Hagagy; Editing by Andrew Torchia and Angus MacSwan)

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