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Jail. Image Credit: Pixabay

Abu Dhabi: Overcrowded facilities and lack of flights to fly out deportees have prompted Kuwait’s Interior Ministry to temporarily suspend its crackdown on offenders of labour and residency laws, local media reported.

Temporary prisons were so overcrowded that absconding workers and other illegals awaiting repatriation could no longer be sent to them for health concerns amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Security sources told Al Qabas the decision was prompted by the health situation in the country, and in line with precautionary measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus among detainees.

“Instructions have been issued three days ago to the various security sectors to stop the campaigns against residency violators and absconding workers, after they intensified them during the past days and arrested many of them, which resulted in an unprecedented overcrowding of the deportation prison,” a source said.

“Overcrowded detention facilities may lead to the spread of infectious diseases among detainees. In addition, the lack of flights, and airlines accepting only very small numbers of deportees on their flights, created a growing backlog and meant that new violators could not be held in already overcrowded facilities,” the source explained.