Manama: Foreign women who married Kuwaiti men after January 2010 will need the approval of a special committee to be able to live in Kuwait.

“The interior ministry has stopped stamping residence permits to the foreign wives of Kuwaiti nationals and whose marriage took place after January 1, 2010,” security sources said.

“These couples now need the approval of the committee set up by Interior Minister Shaikh Ahmad Al Humood and which includes representatives from the interior, foreign and justice ministries and the National Security Agency,” the sources told Al Rai daily.

Mixed couples married before 2010 will not be affected by the decision and will continue to submit the wife’s papers to the immigration authorities.

“For the new couples, the committee will be the one to contact the immigration authorities to inform them whether the foreign wife’s papers are accepted or rejected,” the paper reported on Monday.

The sources attributed the move to make the committee decide on the permits to foreign wives to “a need to reduce the number of marriages between Kuwaiti men and expatriate women.”

“The number of such marriages has reached high figures in recent years and there is a need to address the increasingly worrying issue of Kuwaiti women not getting married. The decision is also driven by security concerns amid worries that some of the marriages were based on common interests and not on forming families,” the sources said.