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Thursday, February 25, 2021

Could Kuwait give the death penalty for a tweet?

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Legislators in Kuwait are in the process of passing a legal amendment that could see the death penalty given for unrestrained tweeting.

Specifically, the new law would govern blasphemy, defined to mean insulting God or the Prophet Muhammad. But the amendment comes after a controversy in Qatar’s northern Gulf neighbor over a tweet by a Shia Muslim there who allegedly posted defamatory comments on Twitter.

The accused, Hamad al-Naqi, says his account must have been hacked and that he didn’t post the contentious messages, Reuters reports. 

Under current laws, he could serve one year in jail for insulting the prophet, or up to 10 years if found guilty of sedition. But Islamist members of parliament there are hoping to implement stricter laws. 

Blasphemy is also illegal in Qatar, whatever the context.

What do you think? How closely do you watch what you post online?

Credit: Photo by James Britton

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