Posted by Fajer Ahmed
With the very recent unfortunate animal mass murder event in Kuwait, I wanted to discuss the very unfortunate laws that regulate animal abuse in Kuwait.
The Kuwaiti constitution does not mention any animal rights.
The Kuwaiti penal (criminal law) does not specify that the abuse of animals is a crime.
However the only law that discusses the killing of an animal is article 253 of the criminal law:
A person who kills an animal owned by another, gives it a poisonous or harmful substance, injures it, makes it useless or decreases its benefits, deliberately and unjustifiable shall be punished up to 2 years of imprisonment and/or shall pay up to 2000 rupees
People make the mistake to think that the above article makes animal abuse a crime, it does not. The article specifies that the animal has to belong to someone so there is no regards for stray dogs. The article also specifies that the animal has to belong to someone other than the abuser. So if someone tortures their own dog, they are not punished.
Person X kills the dog of person Y, with intent and for no reason. Person X is a criminal.
Person X kills a stray dog, person X is not a criminal.
If you are wondering why the article is written that way, its because animals are defined in Kuwaiti law as a materialistic item, in other words… an object. Your dog is considered to be like your phone, your car or like your laptop. Animals in other countries are considered living creatures while in Kuwait the article above on animal killing is located under vandalism in the penal law.
Some of laws are appalling and I am trying think of ways we can get them to change the one on animal abuse. Here are my suggestions on how we could possibly have them change the law (please email me if you have other ideas):
1- Talk to the parliament members, whether you voted for them or against them, whether you believe in voting or not, talk to them, they legally represent the whole nation, Kuwaiti and non Kuwaiti, individual or an organization. CALL THEM. WRITE TO THEM! http://www.kna.kw/clt/index.asp (the site is getting more interactive, ask for their numbers, or email me I have some)
2- Call or write to the municipality http://www.baladia.gov.kw/cbox/
3- Protest, write or sign a petition, ask for a decree (its way more efficient and faster than a law)
Sometimes a situation must happen for a new decree, law or bylaw to be enforced or issues. Let this be one.
Post by Fajer Ahmed – Legal Counsel
Have a Kuwait law related question? Email me at email@example.com
The legal opinions expressed in this post are those of the author Fajer. Opinions expressed by Mark or any other writer on 248am.com are those of the individual’s and in no way reflect Fajer’s opinion.