Middle East

Kuwait Delays Media Law Amidst Press Freedom Concerns

You probably shouldn't get too hopeful

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Kuwait has delayed the enactment of a new media law after objections that it threatens freedom of expression and human rights.

The government adopted the Unified Media Law in April, which gave the information ministry power to license news outlets.

It was expected to be passed by the Kuwaiti parliament this month, but Sheikh Jaber al-Mubarak, the prime minister, decided instead to consult editors and journalists after they raised concerns.

"Kuwait's prime minister deserves praise for spiking this flawed draft law," said Sarah Leah Whitson, the Middle East director at Human Rights Watch (HRW).

"As currently drafted, it would create new red lines for the media and close down the space for public debate, reversing the trend toward greater openness."