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ISLAMABAD: Pakistani lawyers shout slogans against the killing of their colleagues a day after suicide bombing at the Civil Hospital in Quetta, during a protest in Islamabad yesterday. — AFP
ISLAMABAD: Pakistani lawyers shout slogans against the killing of their colleagues a day after suicide bombing at the Civil Hospital in Quetta, during a protest in Islamabad yesterday. — AFP

Pakistan lawyers go on strike after dozens killed in attack

Top court jails officers, expats over bribes for driving licenses

KUWAIT: The public prosecution on Thursday ordered the detention of former candidate in the April National Assembly elections Musaed Al-Qraifa for 21 days pending investigation and trial on charges of insulting the political leadership during an election campaign.

Qraifa was interrogated for hours by the public prosecution after he was arrested by state security agents, his lawyer Ahmad Al-Mutairi said. Mutairi alleged that the law was not applied in ordering his detention for 21 days because the law clearly states that people accused of expressing opinions cannot be detained during interrogation and before a court verdict.

Qraifa is expected to appear next week before a judge, who will decide whether to keep him in jail or free him until the date of his trial. A large number of MPs and political activists have strongly criticized the way Qraifa, a well-known political activist, was arrested by police instead of calling him to appear before the prosecution to be questioned over the accusations.

Several lawmakers and activists gathered at his residence Wednesday night to express their solidarity with him and to condemn his arrest, as several MPs said the way Qraifa was arrested and later detained clearly breached the law.

Meanwhile, two Kuwaitis on Thursday dropped a petition they had submitted to the constitutional court challenging the April parliamentary polls and calling to annul the entire election process because the children of naturalized Kuwaitis were allowed to vote and contest the polls. The constitutional court is expected to rule on 12 other petitions challenging the results of the parliamentary polls.

Meanwhile, the court of cassation on Thursday issued final verdicts to jail a Kuwaiti officer and eight expats for four years each after convicting them in a bribery case to issue driving licenses to expats who do not fulfill conditions to get the licenses. The court said it found that the officer, with a rank of colonel in the traffic department, accepted bribes of up to KD 300 per license to issue the licenses illegally. The court also ordered the deportation of the expats after serving the jail term.

In another case, the court jailed a Kuwaiti noncommissioned officer and an Egyptian for 10 years for issuing illegal driving licenses to expats. It jailed two other Egyptians for five years and eight others of the same nationality for four years each. All expats will be deported after serving the jail terms. Kuwait has imposed strict conditions for expats to obtain a driving license, including having a high salary, a university degree and at least a two-year stay in the country.

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