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Kuwait court sets bails for opposition leader

Kuwait's appeals court grants opposition leader and former MP al-Barrak bail as it begins examining his five-year jail term for insulting the emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad Al-Sabah

AFP , Monday 22 Apr 2013
Musallem al-Barrak
Kuwait's opposition leader Musallem al-Barrak ( Photo: Reuters)
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Kuwait's appeals court on Monday granted opposition leader Musallem al-Barrak bail as it began examining his five-year jail term for insulting the emir, a lawyer said.

Former MP Barrak appeared in court, although he had refused to turn himself in to police over the past week during which he insisted on seeing the original arrest warrant.

"Judge Anwar al-Anzi has decided to freeze the application of the five-year jail term, and released him with a bail of 5,000 dinars ($17,532)," Dokhi al-Hasban told AFP.

The judge adjourned the hearing to May 13.

Barrak, a nationalist former MP, was sentenced to jail on April 15 over remarks he made at a public rally on October 15 and deemed offensive to the emir, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad Al-Sabah.

On Wednesday, riot police fired tear gas and stun grenades at thousands of opposition activists who marched on a police station near Barrak's house to protest a bid by elite special forces to raid the home of the opposition leader.

The Gulf country has been rocked by a bitter political crisis over the past several months after the emir amended the electoral law in a move the opposition claims was unconstitutional.

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