The Emir of Kuwait announces the dissolution of Parliament and the suspension of some articles of the Constitution

On Friday evening, the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Meshaal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, announced the “dissolution” of the National Assembly and a “temporary suspension” of some articles of the constitution.

The Emir of Kuwait said in a televised speech broadcast on state television: “We ordered the dissolution of the National Assembly and the suspension of some articles of the constitution for a period not exceeding 4 years during which all aspects of the democratic process will be studied.” Prince Mishal described the step as “a difficult decision to save the country and secure its highest interests.”

He considered that the country faced “difficulties and obstacles that could not be imagined or tolerated, as some people strived hard to close every port through which we tried to enter in order to overcome our bitter reality, which leaves us no room for hesitation or delay in making this difficult decision.”

The political crisis in Kuwait

Kuwait was elected A new parliament On the fourth of last April, making it the fourth since December 2020, and two days later, the government of Sheikh Muhammad Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah resigned, as a procedural step after the elections.

The elections resulted in limited change, represented by the entry of 11 new deputies, out of 50 elected members of Parliament, which indicates the possibility of a continuing political stalemate, after the first elections during the era of the new Emir of Kuwait.

After the elections, Sheikh Muhammad Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah apologized for… Formation of the new government, This has confused the political scene in light of the reluctance of other figures from the ruling Al-Sabah family to assume office, according to local media.

Then the Emir of Kuwait appointed Sheikh Ahmed Abdullah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah as the new Prime Minister on April 15, and asked him to form the new government, but he has not been able to form it yet.

On April 8, an Amiri decree was issued to postpone the National Assembly meeting to May 14 instead of April 17, based on Article 106 of the Constitution, which allows the Emir to postpone Parliament meetings for a period not exceeding a month, in a repeat of a scenario similar to what happened in 2022.

Behaviors “contrary to constitutional facts”

In his speech, the Emir of Kuwait spoke about “behaviours and actions” by some representatives, without naming them, during the recent period that “came contrary to established constitutional facts.” He continued, explaining that “there are (among these representatives) those who threatened and vowed” to submit an interrogation against a former minister because of “the mere (possibility) of his return to his portfolio.”

He added that other representatives “objected to the nomination of others (for ministerial portfolios), ignorantly or intentionally forgetting that choosing the prime minister and its members is a purely constitutional right for the head of state, and no one may storm its walls, approach its borders, or interfere within its folds.”

The Kuwaiti constitution requires that at least one deputy hold a ministerial portfolio until the formation of the government is complete. But the Prime Minister-designate was unable to convince anyone Representatives participate.

Prince Mishal considered that “the persistence (by some representatives) has reached limits that cannot be accepted or tolerated, as it constitutes a demolition of constitutional values ​​and a waste of the democratic principles that we have all accepted as a guiding path to achieving the public interest.”

He said: “We find, with great regret, that some people go so far as to interfere in the heart of the prince’s powers, and interfere in his choice of his crown prince, forgetting that this is an explicit, clear and clear constitutional right of the prince.”

Constitutional steps

Following the televised speech, Kuwait Television announced the issuance of an Emiri order, including 5 articles, the first of which is “dissolving the National Assembly.” Article Two of the Emiri Order includes suspending the implementation of articles of the Constitution, for a period not exceeding 4 years. During this period, “democratic practice in the country will be studied and the findings of the study will be presented to the Emir of the country to take what we deem appropriate,” according to the Emiri Order.

The third article of the Emiri Order stipulates that “the Emir and the Council of Ministers shall assume the powers delegated to the National Assembly,” while the fourth stipulates that “laws shall be issued by law decrees.” Article Five also stipulates that “the Prime Minister and the ministers, each within his jurisdiction, shall implement the Emiri Decree and it shall be effective from the date of its issuance and publication in the Official Gazette.”

Since Kuwait adopted a parliamentary system in 1962, the Legislative Council has been dissolved more than ten times. And while Representatives are elected, The Prime Minister is appointed by the Emir of the country, and he appoints and dismisses ministers based on the nomination of the Prime Minister.

The confrontation between the government and Parliament hindered the reforms needed by Kuwait’s economy, which seeks to diversify its resources, as the country is one of the largest exporters of crude oil in the world.

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