Kuwait to allow ‘stateless people’ to serve in army

Kuwait to allow ‘stateless people’ to serve in army

KUWAIT CITY – Anadolu Agency
Kuwait to allow ‘stateless people’ to serve in army

Kuwait’s National Assembly approved on March 6 a second reading of a draft legislation that would, if passed, allow “stateless people” to serve in the army.

The term refers to around 96,000 residents of Kuwait who do not have citizenship.

The reading was approved by a vote of 52 to 5, with one lawmaker abstaining, according to the official KUNA news agency.

Parliament approved a first reading of the bill last month.

In April of last year, Kuwait’s chief of general staff allowed stateless people, locally known as “Bedoon,” to join the country’s ground and air forces.

At the time, however, Defense Minister Mohammed al-Khalid al-Sabah had said that only those stateless people whose fathers had served in the army would be allowed to join the country’s armed forces.

The Bedoon lack Kuwaiti citizenship and are viewed as illegal immigrants by the Kuwaiti authorities.