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Kuwaiti ex-MP sentenced to 3 years for offensive tweets
March 27, 2017, 11:30 am

A court in Kuwait on Sunday sentenced former lawmaker Abdul Hamid Dashti to three years in jail for tweets against Saudi King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud during his visit to Kuwait in December. The verdict takes the total of prison sentences stacked up against Dashti after he was convicted in several trials for insulting Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the judiciary in Kuwait to 46 years.

The former MP, a staunch supporter of Syrian President Bashar Al Assad, has been out of Kuwait since last year reportedly to receive medical treatment abroad. His immunity was lifted by the parliament in March 2016 in connection with the state security cases in which he faced legal action for defaming Saudi Arabia.

On July 27, he was sentenced in absentia to 11 years and six months in prison with labour for insulting Saudi Arabia, criticising religion and insulting the judiciary and to three years for insulting Bahrain.

On September 22, he was sentenced to 14 years for his “abusive attacks.” In October, he was sentenced to three years in prison with hard labour for insulting Bahrain, and to three more years also with hard labour for his comments about Saudi Arabia.

His last sentencing was in December when the Court of Appeals annulled a non-guilty verdict in a case and awarded a 10-year sentence. Under Kuwait’s laws, individuals convicted of hostile acts against a foreign country that may expose Kuwait to war or the severance of diplomatic relations are put on trial and may be sent to jail.

Dashti sought to run in the parliamentary elections on November 26 and submitted his application through his son. However, the application was rejected as the election law does not allow proxy nominations and require the physical presence of the applicant.

A participation and a win in the elections would have afforded him a new parliamentary immunity that would have allowed him to go back home.

Source: Gulf News

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