Kuwaiti groups condemn violence against Bedoon protesters

Stateless Arab, known as bidoon, take part in a protest to demand citizenship and other basic rights in Jahra, 50 kms (31 miles) northwest of Kuwait City, on November 9, 2013. AFP PHOTO/YASSER AL-ZAYYAT

Shortly following Bedoon Friday protest in Taimaa and the 9 arrests of protesters, two leftist political groups in Kuwait and a liberal pro-Bedoon group have condemned the violence used by riot police against peaceful Bedoon protesters. Al-Manbar Al-dimokraty issued a statement saying: “we condemn the violence used against Bedoon protesters; the savage oppression against our bedoon brothers who are demanding their fair rights which they were denied for decades. The beating, chasing, and breaking into houses are illegal acts according to Kuwait’s constitution – article 44. We send a message to authorities to quickly¬†naturalize¬†deserving Bedoon and solve the Bedoon issue by granting them their rights to employment, health care, and education.”

As for Taqadomi, their statement came saying: “we warn from using violence against the peaceful Bedoon protesters as it complicates it further. We demand authorities to solve this long going issue and we repeat that the government should stop its racism, discrimination, and continuous delaying. Those who have 1965 census, those who were born in Kuwait, and the families of war prisoners and martyrs, should all be given Kuwaiti citizenship. We also demand gender equality by allowing Kuwaiti women to pass their citizenship to their children. Authorities need to release the nine detainees immediately and unconditionally”

Group29, which is a group of Kuwaiti women activists supportive of the Bedoon cause, stated: “We condemn the oppression used against Bedoon protesters. This deforms Kuwait’s reputation in human rights. Protesters were calling for their stolen rights for citizenship and did no harm to the national security. The oppression and physical attacks practiced by police against protesters of Bedoon and Kuwaitis, violate Kuwait’s international agreements to respect human rights and freedom of expression. We call on authorities need to release the nine detainees immediately and unconditionally and to respect the Bedoon right to protest.”

It is important to mention that the Kuwaiti association of human rights in Kuwait had a shameful stand towards this protest. The vice president of the association Fayez Al-Sultani stated to Al-Anbaa newspaper: “The bedoon protesters are responsible for the violence too because they threw stones on the riot police!”

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