Kuwait: Politics Is Back

The events of November 2011 continue to overshadow politics in Kuwait to this day. Hundreds of protestors stormed the National Assembly building on 16 November 2011 over alleged corruption among parliamentarians.

These events forced the resignation of prime minister Nasser al-Muhammad al-Sabah, a divisive figure who remains an influential political player behind the scenes. Parliament was dissolved shortly afterwards and acrimonious elections held in February 2012 – one candidate’s “election tent” was burned down in the days ahead of the polls.

Among the protestors that day were a number of sitting MPs who were handed jail sentences in absentia in November 2017. Two, Waleed al-Tabatabaei and Jamaan al-Harbash, were members of the current parliament, but MPs voted in favor of them retaining their seats. Kuwait’s constitutional court this week ruled that vote unconstitutional, effectively ruling that the pair should lose their seats. (CONTINUED - 334 WORDS)