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Deputy FM: Kuwait guarantees rights of expatriate workers

Assembly panel debates law on domestic violence

Khaled Al-Jarallah

KUWAIT: Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled Al-Jarallah said yesterday that Kuwait pays a great attention to guaranteeing the rights of expatriate workers in the country and providing suitable conditions for them. Jarallah told reporters that expat workers play an important role in the national economy and different forms of development.

He said Kuwait has laws and legislation and a vast legacy in dealing with expatriate labor, adding that Kuwait is always ready to modify those laws with the aim to provide more justice to expat workers and preserve their rights. Kuwait is home to some 3.3 million expatriates, including some 700,000 domestic helpers, against only 1.4 million Kuwaiti citizens. There have been parliamentary calls to sharply reduce the number of foreigners in the country and to impose wide-ranging charges and taxes on them, including a tax on their remittances to their home countries.

Meanwhile, the National Assembly’s committee for family and women affairs yesterday debated a draft law to combat domestic violence against all sections of the society, especially women. Head of the panel MP Safa Al-Hashem, the only female member in the 50-seat Assembly, said the discussion focused on resolving overlapping between different ministries and government agencies in dealing with domestic violence.

She said the panel members are inclined to give all powers in dealing with victims of domestic violence to the higher council for the family, which includes a fund to spend on the victims. Hashem added that under existing legislation, victims of domestic violence come under the ministries of interior, social affairs and justice, in addition to other departments.

Rapporteur of the panel MP Mohammad Al-Dallal said the draft law was the combination of several proposals and aims at protecting all sections of the society from domestic violence and providing the necessary shelters. Dallal said the bill will be ready before the start of the new Assembly term on Oct 29.

By B Izzak

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