Middle East

Protests in Kuwait over Activist's Arrest

Opposition leader allegedly charged with insulting emir

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Kuwaiti police fired tear gas and smoke bombs on Wednesday to disperse thousands of protesters marching on a prison where an opposition leader is being held on charges of insulting the emir, witnesses said.

The unrest comes amid rising tension ahead of parliamentary elections on December 1 which the opposition is boycotting.

Defence lawyers said on Wednesday prosecutors had charged Musallam al-Barrack on three counts related to a speech in which he made critical remarks about the country's 83-year-old emir, and ordered him held for 10 days pending further questioning.