Fines Introduced for Smoking in Malls

Posted by Mark


According to an article in Al Anba newspaper, the Ministry of Interior have decided to tackle public smoking in malls by fining smokers. According to the article, first time offenders will be fined KD50 if caught smoking while repeat offenders will be fined KD100. The malls are also required to inform restaurants not to allow any smoking and no smoking signs should be put up to let restaurant diners and mall visitors know it’s a smoke-free environment. Any restaurant or mall that doesn’t comply will be fined up to KD50,000.

I thoroughly believe in the short term this will work but I’m curious to see if the police and the malls will continue to enforce this a couple of months down the line. If you remember Avenues was supposed to be a no smoking mall starting January 1st 2011 and that obviously was a complete flop.

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Human Rights Watch: Kuwait DNA tests violate right to privacy

Posted by Mark

Many measures could potentially be useful in protecting against terrorist attacks, but potential usefulness is not enough to justify a massive infringement on human rights,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director. “I suppose videotaping every user of a public toilet could be useful too, but that kind of intrusion is hardly necessary or proportionate, and neither is compulsory DNA testing.

Human Rights Watch published a press release yesterday on Kuwait’s decision to capture every Kuwaiti citizens and residents DNA. In summary, it’s an invasion to privacy and doesn’t really do much in terms of security. Check out their press release [Here]

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First Arab Woman in History to Officiate at Wimbledon is Kuwaiti

Posted by Mark


Kuwaiti line umpire Aseel Shaheen admits she is living a dream after she got selected to be part of the officiating staff at the All England Club.

Dressed in a blue pinstripe shirt and beige pants – the uniform for all officials here at Wimbledon – the hijab-wearing Shaheen quickly stands out.

London may be swarming with veiled Arabs, especially in the summer, but the sight of a woman in a headscarf in tennis circles is definitely not common.

“It’s an indescribable feeling being here. It’s something big, it’s a challenge. I’m the first female from the Arab world to be an umpire at Wimbledon. I was worried that they wouldn’t accept me because I wear a hijab but on the contrary, they really accepted me,” Shaheen told Sport360° at the All England Club.

Another fantastic accomplishment to add to the list for Kuwaiti women. [Link]

Thanks Nibaq

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DNA Tests Mandatory for Everyone in Kuwait

Posted by Mark


In a move that will make privacy advocates cringe, Kuwait passed a law yesterday making DNA tests mandatory for all residents. According to the AFP, people who refuse testing will face a year in prison and a hefty fine.

The draconian law will establish a comprehensive database of all residents in Kuwait, presumably making it easier for law enforcement to track down criminals after the fact. The country’s 1.3 million citizens and 2.9 million foreign residents will all be affected. Roughly $400 million has been set aside to implement the national DNA database program.

Many countries, including England, Sweden and the United States, routinely store the DNA of convicted criminals. Kuwait’s program would be the first such mandatory DNA test for every resident of a given country, regardless of criminal history. [Gizmodo]

Not sure how I feel about this. Don’t think I’m allowed to have feelings on this anyway, it’s compulsory so if I don’t like it I’ll have to GTFO or else I’ll have to spend a year in jail.

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Posted by Mark


I’ve spent the last 30+ minutes trying to figure out what to write. I tend to have a difficult time with words but never like this. By now you’ve probably heard about the devastating explosion that took place at a mosque today during prayers. As of this post at least 13 people are reportedly. I’ve been getting a steady supply of photos and videos via Whatsapp of this tragedy but I won’t be sharing any of them here out of respect. It’s so sad, I can’t believe this happened. If you want to stay up to do date on whats going on, please use this [Link]

This is heartbreaking, may they all rest in peace.

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Excavator Falls Through Kuwait Airways Building

Posted by Mark

One of three excavators demolishing the Kuwait Airways building (from the roof down) fell nine stories when the floor underneath the excavator collapsed. The operator of the excavator sadly passed away. [Source]


I drove by the building earlier today on my way to my barber and noticed they had firetrucks blocking the main road in front of the Kuwait Airways building. I figured it was for safety incase the building collapsed into the street. Only while I was getting a haircut did I get an email from the blog Sala6a informing me of the collapse. So when I left the barber, I passed by the site and noticed an excavator busy digging around the area of the collapse. I couldn’t see the excavator that fell but I could see the other two abandoned excavators on the roof.


It’s dangerous enough when it’s just one excavator on the roof, but three??? How many workers have to die before the authorities put a stop to this? The video on top, shot with a drone shows where the excavator fell through. The other two excavators were lucky to survive.

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Two Deported for Fighting

Posted by Mark


A bunch of people sent me the link to the story below today about two expats getting deported because they fought over a parking lot:

Two Asian men who fought over a car parking spot were arrested by police. The fight started in a Salmiya parking lot, and police were called to break it up. One of the Asians sustained a head wound, so he was taken to Mubarak hospital, while the other man was sent to the police station. Both will be deported. [Source]

Should they be punished? Yes. Deported? No way.


In the paper a day earlier there were two other reports of fights as well (pictured above). One was related to a husband beating his wife and another related to three girls fighting at a cafe. Were they also deported? I doubt it. This whole deportation thing is unjust, confusing and it doesn’t look like it will be applied to everyone.

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Step inside $190M ‘ghost’ stadium

Posted by Mark


If you check the sports page on right this moment, the current featured article is on Kuwait’s abandoned Jaber Al-Ahmad International Stadium. The stadium which was completed back in 2007 has only been used once since then for an officially sanctioned match.

I just read the article and I’m still confused to why the stadium is closed. Supposedly what I heard is what everyone else had heard which is the stadium had a structural fault. But, according to the article, the contractor and the stadium’s security chief have both denied there is any kind of fault in the building. Yet the article also states that the Amiri Diwan have now taken over the project and have hired a new contractor who is currently in the process of repairing the building. So was there a fault or wasn’t there a fault? I don’t get it. Check out the article on CNN [Here]

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Kuwait’s Air Ambulance Service

Posted by Mark


Up to 45 patients have been transported to hospitals and clinics by the new airborne transportation service since its launch in January, a Ministry of Health official said on Sunday.

The ministry has prepared specially equipped helicopters to transport patients or people hurt in accidents from the scenes to hospitals or health centers, thus shortening time needed the transfer time needed and evading road traffic. [Source]

The local air ambulance initiative was established by former servicemen, security veterans, and firefighters and went into service early this year. I spotted the air ambulance a couple of days ago flying over Kuwait City probably heading to the Amiri Hospital. Kuwait already had one of the best ambulance services in the region and having the chopper now as part of its arsenal is obviously beneficial to everyone. I’m not sure what kind of situation merits the use of the air ambulance so if anyone has details on that please leave it in the comments.


There are a couple of videos on YouTube of the helicopter, I’ve shared two with this post.


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Women from Sierra Leone ‘sold like slaves’ in Kuwait

Posted by Mark


“Choose the one you want,” says one agent with a smile. “I will give you a hundred days’ guarantee. If you don’t like her you can send her back.”

The Guardian published an article two days ago on the treatment of domestic workers in Kuwait, specifically ones from Sierra Leone. They compared it to slavery with every right to do so. One interesting fact the article highlighted is that nearly 90% of Kuwaiti households employ at least one foreign maid. That’s just an insane figure. Check out the full article on The Guardian [Here]

Also Fajer the Lawyer previously posted on Domestic Workers Rights [Here] in case you missed it.

Thanks Laila

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