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Kuwait blogger offered bail after conviction

Female activist found guilty of tweets undermining status of the emir

  • By Habib Toumi, Bureau Chief
  • Published: 17:28 May 29, 2013
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: Courtesy: Sara Al Driss
  • Sara Al Driss
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Manama: A Kuwaiti court on Wednesday sentenced blogger Sara Al Driss to 20 months in jail on charges of undermining the status of the Emir Shaikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah.

However, the court said that the sentence could be suspended if she paid 200 Kuwaiti dinars (Dh2,560).

Sara was found guilty of sending four tweets tarnishing royal authority but found innocent of posting another 43 tweets she was being investigated for. The tweets were posted on her personal Twitter account, local media reported.

Other charges leveled against her were taking part in an unlicensed rally and the misuse of her mobile phone.Twitter users in Kuwait expressed support for Sara, with some saying that the ruling was unprecedented for a female activist. Others prepared tribute posters for her, and posted videos of her speeches.

In a separate case, the court of appeals in the capital Kuwait City adjourned the trial of Mohammad Al Belaihis, another blogger, to June 13.

Mohammad was put on trial for posting remarks deemed offensive to the Emir on his Twitter account.

Several Kuwaiti bloggers have been given prison sentences for posting remarks deemed offensive to the Emir despite warnings from the authorities that they would be held legally responsible for any post insulting or undermining the status of the Emir.

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