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Kuwait Intends to Grant Illegal Expats “Amnesty” from March to May

The government is considering a “amnesty” plan that would allow residency violators to leave Kuwait between March and May, according to Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Sheikh Fahad Yousef Saud Al-Sabah, who made this revelation on Saturday. He added that violators could apply for a visa to return to Kuwait through authorized and legal channels.

He urged people who broke Kuwaiti residency laws to take advantage of the “amnesty” period or risk being deported from the country permanently.

Regarding the most recent decisions to permit family and visitation visas, the minister stated that Kuwait was negatively impacted by a shortage of skilled labor in a number of industries, particularly the medical field. He said that a number of criteria would be used to reintroduce such visas, and that sponsors would be informed via text message and other channels of how long the visitor must adhere to rules and regulations. The minister forewarned sponsors who disobeyed the new laws that they would not be allowed to complete any more government transactions.

Regarding the advantages of granting visit visas to citizens, the minister stated that the nation anticipates 100,000 to 200,000 tourists who will stay for 30 to 60 days, which will help the economy. Sheikh Fahad continued, “Building a massive airport is also related to activating the economy.” “We wish to welcome them to Kuwait and demonstrate the beauty of the nation and its culture. People are more than welcome to visit Kuwait during the pleasant four to five months of the year, he said.

The Deputy Prime Minister stated separately in an interview with KUNA that the state’s top priorities include finding solutions for individuals who are in violation of residency laws as well as combating rumors and fake accounts that spread false information and misinformation. He declared that the interior and defense ministries were operating under a strict and well-planned plan to fairly enforce the law for everyone, without exception or bias.

He said that the next few years would be devoted to fighting illegal drugs, creating traffic laws, instituting national military service, and boosting the economy of the nation by granting multiple entry visas under stringent guidelines. The minister gave an indication of the Ministry of Defense’s priorities, which included both building the army’s and the armed forces’ capabilities and preserving their morale.

In order to carry out the anti-corruption campaign started by the late Sheikh Nasser Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, the Ministry of Defense would also like to resolve issues related to corruption, he said, adding that strengthening partnerships with regional and global military organizations was another crucial objective. Last month, Sheikh Fahad forwarded a file containing allegations of crimes involving public funds, money laundering, and financial irregularities to the Public Prosecutor.

The Ministry of Defense stated that the referral was made in an effort to combat crimes involving public funds and that it would strengthen justice and neutrality while also improving transparency. When questioned about the national military service requirement, the minister responded that it was imperative to take the action in order to deter threats, citing Kuwaitis’ resistance to the Iraqi invasion in 1990–91 as evidence. Combat and military expertise helped Kuwaitis use weapons, set up explosives, and devise strategies to defeat the invaders. Sheikh Fahad also confirmed that national service has several advantages.

He noted that challenges like COVID-19 pandemic had made it clear that national service in the army was a must, noting that the service taught more than utilizing weapons; it instilled skills to run the country in case of man-made or natural disasters. On refuting and combating false news and rumors, Sheikh Fahad said that the Interior Ministry was keen on countering such threats, which might lead to instability and fear. Those behind the rumors would surely face justice, he affirmed, adding that whether in Kuwait or abroad, those committing such acts would be held accountable.

“Regarding those using fake names to publish from abroad, we in a short period of time will control this issue and know who is providing owners of those accounts. I promise that we will eliminate many of these accounts in the near future,” he said.

Regarding the new traffic law, the minister stated that it was a draft law for the benefit of Kuwait as a whole and that it would be discussed and possibly ratified in the National Assembly’s first session.

He emphasized that the punishment must be commensurate with the seriousness of the offense, meaning that someone who runs a red light, for example, should face severe consequences for committing a potentially fatal traffic infraction. He pointed out that a large number of traffic accidents are caused by the laxity of the current fines. He also mentioned that parents have a responsibility. “They are usually paying fines for crimes that their children have committed.”

Speaking of the war against illicit drugs, Sheikh Fahad said that there was continuous cooperation with fellow GCC countries to fight drug trafficking, revealing that there were preemptive operations against drug dealers. Since taking the helm of the Interior Ministry, Sheikh Fahad said, the ministerial teams have managed to bust 30 drug-related smuggling operations and pointed out that the main targets of drug dealers were individuals between the ages of 16 and 25. – KUNA


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