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Sunday, November 4, 2012


Police attack opposition demonstration in Kuwait
Kuwaiti protesters run for cover during an anti-government demonstration in Kuwait City on October 31, 2012.
Kuwaiti protesters run for cover during an anti-government demonstration in Kuwait City on October 31, 2012.

Sunday, November 04, 2012.

Kuwaiti police have clashed with thousands of people protesting against changes to an electoral law, which the opposition has called a constitutional coup by the government.

On Sunday night, the police fired tear gas canisters and stun grenades to disperse the opposition protesters at Mishref, about 20 kilometers south of the capital Kuwait City, AFP reported. 

The opposition had planned a demonstration against the new voting rules for parliamentary elections on December 1 in Kuwait City but elite special forces and police completely sealed off the protest site. After the ban on the gathering, organizers told supporters via Twitter to assemble at Mishref. 

The security forces moved quickly and blocked the roads leading to Mishref but thousands of protesters still managed to get through and immediately started protesting. 

The police dispersed the main crowd, but many more demonstrators joined the protest rally in their cars or on the fringes of the main protest. 

The protesters for a short time cut off the main motorway in the south of Kuwait. 

Opposition activists said the security forces arrested a number of protesters but there were no immediate reports of casualties or injuries. 

The opposition called for the demonstration after the government announced last week it was holding elections on December 1, 2012 and would change the electoral law "to preserve national unity".

Activists say a decision to change the electoral law by Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad Al Sabah is aimed at electing a rubber-stamp parliament. 

Kuwait was the first Arab state in the Persian Gulf to establish an elected parliament in 1962. However, the Al Sabah family remained in control of most key posts, including the premiership and the ministries of defense, interior, and foreign affairs. 

GJH/AS of PressTv

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