KUWAIT: General Director of Kuwait Municipality Ahmad Al-Manfouhi heads a meeting of the committee to follow up the implementation of health measures yesterday. - KUNA

KUWAIT: Kuwait has decided to use armed forces to help implement the health measures adopted by the government last week to confront the spread of the coronavirus, the Municipality announced yesterday. General Director of Kuwait Municipality Ahmad Al-Manfouhi said in a statement that armed forces of the country will join state bodies to confront the spread of COVID-19 and to apply the government's decision on restricting access to public venues for unvaccinated people.

Manfouhi, who also heads the main committee to follow up the implementation of health measures, said the committee discussed yesterday the mechanism for implementing the government's decision. The committee decided to use the armed forces to help civilian health teams implement the decision, starting on Sunday, to restrict unvaccinated citizens and residents from entering restaurants, cafes, gyms, salons and shopping malls covering more than 6,000 square meters.

Manfouhi explained that Kuwait needs to intensify the application of health requirements during the next two months, hoping to achieve herd immunity by increasing the percentage of vaccinated people. On June 14, Kuwait announced the discovery of the first cases of the Delta COVID-19 variant. Since June 13, Kuwait has opened all museums, cultural institutions and facilities to the public, and has also started direct flights to the United Kingdom, as part of efforts to ease COVID-19 restrictions.

Meanwhile, opposition MPs and groups yesterday continued to lash out at the government and its supporters in the National Assembly for passing the state budget, insisting that approving the budget without a proper debate is "an aggression on the constitution". Leading opposition lawmaker Obaid Al-Wasmi said it appears that the country is "hijacked" by a small group that is unaware of the serious consequences constitutional violations pose on the constitutional system.

He said that what happened during the latest Assembly session was unprecedented, but he praised the strong popular support for opposition lawmakers. Opposition MP Shuaib Al-Muwaizri vowed the opposition will continue to target the forces of corruption, saying "we will not surrender". MP Mohammad Al-Mutair blasted the government and its supporters, saying that "those who think they have won are wrong", adding that they have suffered a historic downfall.

The liberal Kuwait Democratic Forum said in a statement that the approval of the budget without a presentation by the finance minister amounts to authorizing the government to squander public funds. The forum said such illegal practices by the government is "an ugly way of its continued aggression on the constitution".

A group of Kuwaiti diwaniyas known for backing the government strongly criticized chaos caused by some MPs during Tuesday's session, warning that this will distort the reputation of Kuwaiti democracy. In a session marred by shouts, quarrels and even punches, the Assembly on Tuesday passed the state budget amid stiff opposition by many lawmakers, who demanded a full debate before the vote. Parts of the session and the voting were held under the protection of Assembly guards, a rare event in Kuwait. - Agencies