Thousands of Kuwaitis defy court order

Thousands of Kuwaitis defy court order

KUWAIT CITY - Agence France-Presse
Thousands of Kuwaitis rallied late June 26 against a court ruling scrapping legislative polls as the opposition called for a constitutional monarchy and a full parliamentary system.

“This is the beginning of the road to a constitutional monarchy,” prominent opposition MP Mussallam al-Barrak said. This is the first time that Kuwait’s mainstream opposition called for fundamental reforms, a demand usually made by youth activists. The constitutional court, whose rulings are final, declared last week February’s legislative election, won by the opposition, illegal and reinstated the previous pro-government Parliament.

It based its decision on the grounds that two decrees dissolving the previous Parliament and calling for a fresh election, both issued in December, were found to be flawed.The ruling also forced the government to resign on June 25 after just over four months in office. It said the move was designed to pave the way to take the necessary legal action to implement the verdict.

“We call on the authorities to issue a new decree to dissolve the 2009 Parliament,” that was reinstated by the court ruling, Barrak told the crowds estimated by the organisers at around 30,000. Islamist MP Faisal al-Muslim said opposition groups have agreed to fight the forthcoming election on the same platform which calls “for comprehensive constitutional and legislative reforms.”

Under Kuwait’s unique parliamentary system, the government is controlled by senior members of the Al-Sabah ruling family and unelected ministers and its formation normally is not in line with election results.