Kuwait News



KUWAIT: Well-informed security sources stressed that 12 robberies were committed in Kuwait on a daily basis and that police stations all over the country had received 2,500 robbery reports in the period of January-July 2013. The sources added that most of the time, perpetrators manage to get away and the cases get filed against anonymous suspects.

The sources explained that vehicle, commercial stores and house robberies are on top of the list, which calls for stricter security measures and redeployment of security patrols inside residential areas according to how densely populated they are. “Robbing vehicles by smashing their windows while parked outside citizens and expatriates’ houses, markets or workplaces has become a phenomenon”, stressed the sources . The sources added that total robberies committed in 2012 reached 4,664 and that crimes have accordingly doubled this year. “Some new crimes are on the increase such as premeditated murder, robbery, armed robbery, fights for various reasons, assaults, possessing unlicensed firearms and suicides,” explained the sources, noting that all state bodies should joint efforts to study such crime and discuss finding proper solutions to them. “Though robberies are widespread worldwide, the dangerous thing here in Kuwait is that culprits are never caught in some cases and cases get filed against anonymous perpetrators and are closed,” added the sources, noting that car thieves have gone as far as robbing vehicles parked outside police stations.

The sources added that most of those arrested are unemployed people, teens, drug addicts and people with criminal records who usually smash vehicles’ windows to get a few dinars to cover their daily expenses and that the robbers usually focused on certain brands and models that can be taken apart and resold for spare parts at the scrap market. Notably, other security sources told Al-Rai that the new measure of having dependant wives and children older than 18 have their fingerprints scanned on renewing their residency visas was meant to update security records, which may help solve some unsolved crimes where criminals remain unknown and no match could be found for their fingerprints. —Al-Qabas

KUWAIT: The rate at which oysters are dying at the Khairan beach has doubled since the incident was first reported last Wednesday, an environmental organization warned in a statement yesterday in which they demanded extensive investigation to find the reasons behind this phenomenon. “The Kuwait Dive Team found piles of dead oysters in numbers that vastly exceed those first reported on Wednesday”, team leader and President of the Environment Voluntary Foundation Waleed Al-Fadhel said yesterday. He further indicated that other marine species such as crabs were found dead at the same site.

This comes as a government body rejected concern about a potential environmental phenomenon behind the massive number of dead oysters reported recently at the Khairan beach. “The dead oysters were likely disposed by people who caught them for consumption or to look for pearl”, said Dr Muna Husain, head of the biodiversity protection department at the Environment Public Authority. She further added in a statement Thursday that “dead oysters naturally do not float to the surface, but remain attached to the seafloor or rocks near the beach”.

Newspapers had quoted Al-Fadhel who insisted that what happened was not a result of human intervention. “Dead oysters were opened by 45 degrees whereas a person looking for pearl would open the shells by 180 degrees”, he explained in statements to Al-Watan daily. Al-Fadhel further indicated that three types of shellfish, in addition to squids and algae where recorded in the death site, which he says further supports the argument that what happened was a result of pollution or natural phenomenon.

The Green Line, meanwhile, seems to agree that the dead oysters were washed ashore after being first caught then dropped back in the sea. “According to eyewitnesses and scientific indicators compiled by marine specialists, there is no doubt that the oysters were first removed from the seafloor and then thrown back to the water by perpetrators looking for pearl”, Green Line President Khalid Al-Hajri said in a statement Thursday.

He further indicated that his group “managed to identify people suspected in this crime” through an “environmental inspection method that the Green Line exclusively adopts”. Al-Hajri also took the opportunity to criticize the EPA for “failing to protect the Kuwaiti shores as shown evident by the recent incident”, and also blamed “a voluntary organization which hosts a traditional pearl diving ceremony every year”.

Harvesting pearl oil is illegal in Kuwait’s territorial waters as per a Public Authority for Agricultural Affairs and Fish Resources decision made in 2007 to protect the marine species from overfishing. The dead oysters were found near a location known historically as the “best spot to fish for pear oyster in Kuwaiti waters”, according to Al-Fadhel.

“The spot located in front of Al-Khairan at depths ranging between 1 and 4 meters is considered the best pearl diving spot for the past 300 years for producing the most expensive kinds of pearl in the world”, said Al-Fadhel who called for procedures to protect “the national wealth”. Meanwhile, Al-Fadhel revealed that the Kuwait Dive Team recorded red tide in Al-Fentas Thursday, but did not connect between this phenomenon and the oyster deaths.

KUWAIT: A Pakistani hit three male compatriots with an iron bar after seeing them harassing his girlfriend — an Asian — when she went to a grocery store in Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh. The woman was surprised when the three men followed her to the grocery store near the building where she and her family are residing. Her boyfriend saw them harassing her, so he took an iron bar and beat them. Some passersby intervened and referred the injured to Farwaniya Hospital, while the woman’s boyfriend was taken to the police station for questioning.

KUWAIT: The interior ministry will start receiving applications to transfer domestic labor residency visas (article 20) to private sector ones (article 18) from today until Nov 15. The ministry had been criticized for not putting the measure into practice despite the approval of the minister of social affairs and labor.

The announcement came after Interior Ministry Assistant Undersecretary for Nationality and Passports Affairs Maj Gen Sheikh Faisal Nawaf Al-Ahmad held a meeting with Social Affairs Ministry Assistant Undersecretary Jamal Al-Dousary in the presence of Director General of Immigration Department Brig Adnan Al-Kandari and Director of Public Relations and Moral Guidance Colonel Adel Al-Hashash. The two sides discussed a suitable mechanism to coordinate the solution to the issue of transferring the work permits, especially since the grace period for transfers ends on Nov 15.

By A Saleh

KUWAIT: The Embassy of Pakistan held a meeting on 27 October 2013 to observe Kashmir Black Day. Speaking on the occasion, the Ambassador of Pakistan to Kuwait Syed Abrar Hussain recalled that 65 years ago India occupied Kashmir through military force on 27 October 1947 when Kashmiri people were demanding accession of their state to Pakistan. India took the issue to the UN Security Council which resolved that the dispute would be decided through a free and impartial plebiscite. Subsequently, Ambassador Hussain said, not only the UN but even Indian leadership promised the right of self determination for Kashmiri people time and again. Prime Minister Nehru is on record making commitments for a fair and impartial plebiscite in his several statements from 1947 to 1955. The Indian government had also clearly said on various fora that the Legislative Assembly of Kashmir did not have any mandate on the accession issue and that the Indian government would keep its promises of free and impartial plebiscite in the State.

Ambassador Hussain pointed out that as India backed out on its promises and refused to implement the UN resolutions, the Kashmiris were compelled to take to the streets. Unfortunately their mass uprising and peaceful protests were responded with military might by India. Thousands of Kashmiris have been martyred.

The Ambassador said that observance of Kashmir Black Day is aimed at reminding the international community that Kashmiris are still waiting for implementation of the UN resolutions which promise them their right to self determination. He reiterated that Pakistan would continue to extend political, moral and diplomatic support to the people of Kashmir.

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KUWAIT: Following a press release issued by the interior ministry to refute Twitter rumors that MoI assistant undersecretary for traffic affairs Maj Gen Abdul Fattah Al- Ali had been assaulted during a traffic inspection campaign in Jahra, wellinformed security sources explained that after spending an hour at the inspection check points at Jahra entrances, Ali moved to another inspection site and on his way, stopped for fuel at Naseem gas station. “Ali saw four vehicles without license plates inside the station and after confiscating the driving licenses of three of them, he approached the fourth driver who looked no more than 12 years old,” said that the sources, noting that the driver asked Al-Ali to identify himself and as soon as he did, the boy drove off, breaking the fuel hose that was still fueling his race car, and vanished.

The sources added that police patrols that arrived upon a call from Ali could not catch the runaway driver. “There is a great deal of law violations in Jahra and that will be closely watched,” stressed the sources. On another concern, the sources denied MoI’s intention to ban the issuance of driving licenses for dependant wives

KUWAIT: Kuwait’s historical sites reflect glimpse of ancient human history which could provide answers regarding the events that took place and may have had an impact on the course of human history. In October of each year, Kuwait’s National Council for Culture, Arts, and Letters (NCCAL) receive geological excavation teams from different countries to study historical sites in Failaka Island, Sabiya, and Kuwait Bay, with the participation of Kuwaiti experts to benefit from the international experiences in this field. Assistant Secretary General for Antiquities and Museums Affairs in the council Shihab Al-Shihab said that delegations from different international universities and institutes, which the council had signed agreements with, have arrived in the country to reveal new information behind the historical sites.

He noted that the teams consist of experts in archeology, anatomy and anthropologists. Al-Shihab said that the agreements required publishing the results of their studies. He added that the experts will hold workshops in their universities to present their students with the region’s history, noting that this would be a great step to make Kuwait a tourist attraction for its rich human history. He said that the studies may reveal a different face of Failaka Island from the one we see now, with the teams aiming to study the buildings and whole sites that sank deep under water, he explained.

Revealing these sunken sites may give us an idea about the nature of the relation between Failaka, Sabiya, and Kuwait Bay he noted, while it may give clear answers as to why were the buildings mainly existing in certain parts of the island, he also added. Al-Shihab said that the French mission is studying the location of what is commonly known as the Christian city in Failaka, while the British mission is studying the Islamic monuments in Kuwait Bay, and the Italian studying Al- Qurainiya site.

The Danish mission is also studying parts of Failaka, with new technologies that would help in better understanding the historical events and culture of these sites. He also added that a Georgian mission, will study sites belonging to the Stone Age in the island. A Polish mission will study Islamic sites and cemeteries in the island, including the sunken sites in order to draw a map of such locations and of Kuwait Bay, he noted, adding that studying the underwater monuments will not start until next March, due to the water’s cold temperatures. The Secretary General noted that a group of experts will visit Kuwait next January to cooperate with a local team to complete the requirements of the World Heritage Center, under the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in order to add Saad and Saeeda location in Failaka to the center’s final list.

The requirements of the UNESCO’s agreement for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage in 1972 included that the country renovates the historical site, trains and forms a local team to take care of the site. Al-Shihab praised the efforts of public sector organizations in cooperating with the visiting missions and supporting the council, especially Kuwait Municipality and the Ministry of Public Works. He also praised the cooperation of different organizations in the country for paying attention to Kuwait’s historical heritage, noting that they would not run any project that might destroy even the smallest part of these sites. — KUNA

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