Passengers stranded at the Kuwait Airport for 4 days

Post by Mark

I just read that 150 passengers were stranded at the Kuwait Airport for up to 4 days because Kuwait Airways flights to Mumbai were cancelled. According to the article, on top of the waiting the passengers also had to endure discrimination and rude treatment. I once got stuck at the Kuwait Airport for 6 hours when my flight got delayed and I got bored to death so I can only imagine how terrible it must have been for these passengers. Here is the link to the article [Link]


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More support against the internet download cap

Post by Mark

The download cap issue was raised again by another member or parliament this time by MP Faisal Al-Mislem. According to an article in Al Watan, Al-Mislem met the minister of communication and discussed the case with him. He told the minister how Internet subscribers had subscribed to unlimited internet only to later be told that their connection is now limited. According to Al-Mislem as long as subscribers have a valid subscription then the internet providers don’t have a right to suspend or slowdown the service.

Here is the article on Al-Watan [English] [Arabic]

Thanks Salem and unim


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MP Al Saadoon fights on behalf of internet users in Kuwait

Post by Mark

Finally some good news regarding the internet caps situation in Kuwait right now. Yesterday member of parliament Ahmed Al-Saadoon spoke about the current internet cap situation and urged the minister of communications to put an end to the new internet laws. I really hope they do. [YouTube]

Thanks Othman


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Kuwait 14th Richest Country in the World

Post by Mark

Global Finance released the list of richest and poorest countries in the world for 2010 based on GDP data per capita. Kuwait came in 14th place while Qatar came in first. Congo on the other hand turned out to be the poorest. [Here]

Update: Here is the full list [Link]


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Men should be allowed sex slaves

Post by Mark

I got a lot of emails regarding the political activist Salwa al Mutairi’s recent comments on how men should be allowed to have sex slaves. She even took the extra mile and brainstormed ideas on where the sex slaves could come from. Personally I think that is a terrible idea obviously and she probably lost a lot of credibility because of her statements but, it is her opinion and she is entitled to it. Freedom of the speech means even people with wacky ideas are allowed to share them. Anyway here is the link with the story in case you missed it. [Link]


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Photo Fail

Post by Mark

This was in today’s newspaper.


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Kuwait no longer leader in freedom of the press in the Arab world

Post by Mark

According to the Freedom of the Press 2011 survey release, Kuwait no longer tops the Arab world in freedom of the press, that position now goes to Lebanon. Previously Kuwait was always on top but this year it dropped from a global position of 115th last year to 124th place in 2011. You can check out the full results and press releases [Here]

Below is the freedom of the press ranking for the Middle East and North Africa:

1- Israel
2- Lebanon
3- Kuwait
4- Algeria
5- Jordan
6- Egypt
7- Qatar
8- Iraq / Morocco
10- Oman / UAE
12- Bahrain
13- Palestine / Saudi Arabia / Yemen
16- Syria
17- Tunisia
18- Iran
19- Libya


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Kuwaiti courier led to bin Laden capture?

Post by Mark

There seems to be some kind of miscommunication going around or maybe it’s me that is wrong. All the news sites are reporting the courier that led to the capture of bin Laden was a Kuwaiti.

Aide Who Led to Bin Laden Was Kuwaiti-Born Courier

A diplomatic source told CNN that the courier who was in close contact with Osama bin Laden and who eventually led the United States to him was a Kuwaiti named Abu Ahmad.

Phone call by Kuwaiti courier led to bin Laden

The guy’s nickname was “al Kuwaiti” but from what I’ve read he wasn’t a Kuwaiti but instead a Pakistani national who was born in Kuwait which doesn’t make him a Kuwaiti.

It took years of work before the CIA identified the courier’s real name: Sheikh Abu Ahmed, a Pakistani man born in Kuwait. [Source]

I wonder if the Kuwait PR department will kick in to correct this bit of information since right now its giving Kuwait a bad image.

Update: The main headline right now on CNN.com is “U.S. tracked Kuwaiti courier since 2007


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Art in Kuwait highlighted by The Economist

Post by Mark

I was just checking the blog ArtKuwait when I found out that there was an article on Art in Kuwait yesterday in The Economist. Turns out there is an artist who currently has his work exhibited on four billboards in Hawalli (who would have thought) and they’re going to be up there until the end of the month (check pic above). Here are some excerpts from the article:

ABOVE a busy roundabout in Hawalli, a suburb of Kuwait, loom four giant but subtle photographs about Arab identity and placelessness by Tarek Al-Ghoussein. A Palestinian photographer originally from Kuwait, Mr Al-Ghoussein has exhibited widely, but this is the first time his work has been seen in the country of his birth. Kuwaitis and Palestinians have a chequered past. Decades of relative harmony between the two peoples were soured when Yasser Arafat, as head of the Palestine Liberation Organisation, applauded Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait in 1990. Since then, the Palestinian population in Kuwait has dwindled from nearly half a million to around 40,000.

Mr Al-Ghoussein’s billboards will be on view in Kuwait until the end of April. They are the second instalment in a series of four art projects by Palestinians that includes Khalil Rabah, Jack Persekian and Tarek Atoui. Instigated and underwritten by Rana Sadik, a collector and philanthropist of Palestinian descent, the series is arranged to coincide with the 50th anniversary of Kuwait’s independence and the 20th anniversary of its liberation from Iraq.

“The billboards are a way to remind people on both sides of the positive historical relationship between Palestinians and Kuwaitis,” said Abdulaziz Al-Mulla, a board member of the Kuwait Graduates Society, an organisation of some 5,000 members. Interestingly, the artist’s father was Ambassador to America in the 1960s and instrumental in getting Kuwait into the United Nations. So it is apposite that Mr Al-Ghoussein’s photographs have been given such a cordial diplomatic role.

You can read the full article on The Economist [Here]

via ArtKuwait


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Ten must-read blogs from the Middle East

Post by Mark

CNN have put together a list of the 10 must-read blogs from the Middle East and my blog made it to the list! This is what they had to say about me:

Want a break from politics? Try 248am for a slice of Kuwaiti life

Mark Makhoul, 32, a creative director at an advertising agency, began his current blog, 248am, in 2005. Mark’s wife Nataly Tawil, a designer, makes occasional contributions to the blog. The pair are both Lebanese and live in Kuwait.

While it may not offer the political insight of some of the other blogs on the list, it does present a slice of life in Kuwait, covering art, technology and more, with lots of reader contributions.

And it’s not entirely without controversy … Makhoul is apparently being sued by a Japanese restaurant chain over a negative review.

Check out the full list and article by clicking [Here]


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