No deal with Co­moros to take Kuwait state­less: Min­is­ter

Pakistan Observer - - INTERNATIONAL -

KUWAIT CITY—Kuwait’s for­eign min­is­ter said Mon­day that a deal to grant thou­sands of state­less peo­ple in the Gulf emi­rate Co­moran na­tion­al­ity had not been struck de­spite re­cent re­ports.

Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Sabah, in com­ments pub­lished in the Al-Qabas daily news­pa­per, de­nied ru­mors cir­cu­lat­ing in Kuwaiti me­dia on the agree­ment. “If we sign an agree­ment with any coun­try, the for­eign min­istry is obliged... to com­plete the nec­es­sary le­gal pro­ce­dures in ac­cor­dance with the con­sti­tu­tion,” the min­is­ter said.

Co­moran Ex­ter­nal Af­fairs Min­is­ter Ab­dulka­rim Mo­hamed said in Kuwait last month that his coun­try was ready to con­sider tak­ing thou­sands of state­less peo­ple de­nied cit­i­zen­ship there.

Lo­cal me­dia in Kuwait re­cently sug­gested that a deal was in the works and re­ported scams in­volv­ing large sums charged for as­sis­tance in ob­tain­ing Co­moran cit­i­zen­ship.

More than 110,000 state­less peo­ple, lo­cally known as bidoons, have been liv­ing in Kuwait for decades claim­ing the right to cit­i­zen­ship in the oil-rich emi­rate and the gen­er­ous wel­fare ben­e­fits that ac­com­pany it.

But the govern­ment de­scribes them as “il­le­gal res­i­dents” and says only 34,000 qualify for con­sid­er­a­tion for cit­i­zen­ship.—Agen­cies

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