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Kuwait

Two Kuwaiti newspapers have been temporary suspended for breaking a news blackout about an alleged coup plot, a judge has ruled today.

The independent newspapers, Al Watan and Alam Al Yawm, published details of a videotape said to show former senior officials planning the overthrow of the Gulf state’s leadership.

Both papers have been ordered to stop printing for two weeks.

The editor of Al Watan said it would appeal against the suspension.

Kuwaiti independent newspapers, Al Watan and Alam Al Yawm, published details of a videotape said to show former senior officials planning the overthrow of the Gulf state's leadership

Kuwaiti independent newspapers, Al Watan and Alam Al Yawm, published details of a videotape said to show former senior officials planning the overthrow of the Gulf state’s leadership

He told Reuters news agency: “I do not think we talked about the tape more than any other newspaper.”

The videotape purportedly contains allegations of a plot to topple the government of the Western-backed emir, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmed al-Jaber al-Sabah.

Reports about the tape have featured extensively in local media since the start of the year, prompting a recent call from the emir’s office to stop discussing the topic.

Earlier this month the Kuwaiti prosecutor’s office ordered a media blackout of the investigation. Last week Kuwait’s lawmakers discussed the tape behind closed doors.

Kuwait’s parliament is one of the few elected bodies in the Gulf.


Kuwait is home to about a dozen daily newspapers, which often include criticism of government ministers including some ruling family members.

Hundreds of people were protesting outside the Kuwaiti Parliament, when dozens of them stormed the building late on Wednesday.

The protesters were demanding that Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah step down.

Hundreds of demonstrators, including opposition lawmakers, have been protesting weekly outside parliament over alleged corruption.

According to some reports, riot police had beaten protesters using batons as they gathered outside parliament.

AFP news agency reports that at least 5 protesters were injured.

“Now, we have entered the house of the people,” said Mussallam al-Barrak, who was among those who led the protest against Sheikh Nasser, a nephew of the emir.

Hundreds of people were protesting outside the Kuwaiti Parliament, when dozens of them stormed the building

Hundreds of people were protesting outside the Kuwaiti Parliament, when dozens of them stormed the building

People broke open the gates to the parliament building and managed to enter the main chamber, where they sang the national anthem and then left a short time later.

According to eyewitness and protesters, guardsmen did not intervene when they entered the parliament building, stormed after protesters’ attempt to march on the prime minister’s house were blocked.

“Some people managed to get inside. No confrontation happened with the national guard who are guarding the building,” said eyewitnesses.

“People are asking for more reforms, and especially as recently the government has not been going with the spirit of the constitution, which some regard as the absolute minimum of democracy.”

As the crowd returned to the square outside, the protesters outside shouted: “The people want to bring down the head (of government).”

Kuwait’s parliament is one of the few elected bodies in the Gulf.

Kuwait has not seen the mass protests that toppled former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and Tunisia’s Zine al-Abedine Ben Ali, thanks to a generous welfare system, observers say.

But opposition groups have escalated pressure on Kuwait’s leadership in recent months over claims of corruption and perceived attempts to roll back political freedoms.

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