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Kuwait court voids 2022 vote, restores previous parliament

Opposition MPs won 28 of the 50 seats in last year’s polls, giving them a majority in parliament.

Kuwait’s constitutional court has ruled that last September’s parliamentary elections, which the opposition won, were null and void and the previous parliament must be reinstated.

Sunday’s move comes at a time of renewed friction between the elected parliament and government, following the reappointment of the country’s prime minister this month. the government resigned in a confrontation with Congress in January.

Last year, Kuwait’s crown prince dissolved parliament and called for an early poll to end a lingering domestic political feud that has hampered fiscal reforms.

September poll – Most Comprehensive in the Last Decade – Opposition MPs won 28 out of 50 seats and won a parliamentary majority. The vote marked a victory for the opposition. Many of them have stayed out of the elections over the past decade due to their allegations that the executive branch is interfering in parliament.

But Justice Mohammad bin Nagy said on Sunday that the court had declared the dissolution of parliament null and void, nullifying the early elections held in September.

“The constitutional powers of the dissolved parliament shall be restored from the date of this judgment,” he said in a courtroom attended by reporters.

“Invalidation of the electoral process”

Lawyer Nawaf Al-Yassin said the ruling is pending several election appeals.

“The appeal relates to the invalidity of the electoral process, the decree requiring elections and the decree dissolving the previous National Assembly,” he told AFP news agency.

Kuwait, an OPEC oil-producing country, has banned political parties but has more influence in parliament than similar bodies in other Gulf countries.

translation: The 22nd June 2022 speech by His Imperial Highness the Crown Prince and the 18th October 2022 speech by the Crown Prince’s Spokesperson clearly stated that the dissolution and elections were conducted in accordance with law and constitutional procedures. increase. Today’s court ruling shows that they were all wrong. Therefore, the person who provided the lawyer should be held accountable… Kuwait does not deserve such a farce.

Frequent political disputes, often leading to cabinet reshuffles and the dissolution of parliament, have hampered investments and reforms aimed at reducing the country’s heavy dependence on oil revenues.

A member of the disbanded parliament, Abdullah Al-Turaij, hailed the move as “correcting the government’s mistakes in dealing with parliament”.

Kuwait’s political stability has traditionally relied on government and parliamentary cooperation.

Kuwait’s leadership has responded to several opposition demands, including amnesty for political dissidents, but key reform proposals such as the Public Debt Law continue to face legislative impasse.

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