Kuwait passport
The decision was in line with Articles 9 and 11 of the 1959 Kuwaiti citizenship law. Image Credit: Wiki Commons

Dubai: Seventeen Kuwaitis will have their citizenship withdrawn for obtaining the nationalities of other countries, taking the total number of Kuwaitis who lost their citizenship to 71 in less than two months, local media reported.

The Minister of Interior and Chairman of the Higher Committee for Acquiring Nationality Sheikh Thamer Al Ali has issued two decisions to withdraw the citizenship of 17 Kuwaitis.

The decision was in line with Articles 9 and 11 of the 1959 Kuwaiti citizenship law.

Article 9 states that if a Kuwaiti man marries a non-Kuwaiti woman and then the marriage ends, the woman does not lose her citizenship unless she regains her original nationality or a new one.

In terms of Article 11, a Kuwaiti can lose their citizenship if they acquire a new nationality voluntarily. In this case, the children and wives do not lose their citizenship except if they end up obtaining the nationality as well.

Two months ago, the Kuwaiti Supreme Committee for Nationality revoked the citizenship of 54 citizens, mainly females, who obtained nationalities of other countries.

Citizenship problems

The topic of revoking citizenships in Kuwait has been widely discussed, as throughout the years several prominent political figures and outspoken critics of the government have been stripped of their citizenship.

On the other hand, there are approximately 100,000 Bidoon, or stateless, people in Kuwait, who do not have any form of citizenship. The Bidoon issue has been a central topic for many years, as many politicians, activists and lawyers have called on the government and parliament to fix the 60-year old problem. Many Bidoon are unemployed, their children are not in school due to financial constraints and live in shanty towns on the outskirts of the country, further alienating them from society.