Kuwait says claims about restricting public freedoms are 'baseless'

New law enacted in January is meant to fight cybercrime, ministry says
Kuwait says claims about restricting public freedoms are 'baseless'
By Staff writer
Thu 14 Jul 2016 01:39 PM

Online reports claiming that Kuwait is restricting the public’s freedom of speech are "baseless", said the Ministry of Interior on Wednesday.

Social networks had reportedly said a new telecommunications law was enacted by the ministry in Kuwait in order to monitor social networks and record personal phone calls using the civil register, reported local media.

“There is no basis for claims that the ministry monitors personal phone calls or services offered by the social networks through many popular apps,” the ministry said in a statement carried out by state news agency KUNA, reported the UAE’s WAM.

“Tracking cybercrime would not require watching social networks or internet users in general with an eye to incriminate them.”

It said a new law had been enforced in January but is meant at helping the ministry fight crime and “carry out certain steps such as first responding to a complaint about the occurrence of a cybercrime and then following it up with pertinent investigation with the end result of eventually nabbing the offender or offenders”.

It said offenders who set up illegal websites, carry out online money­ laundering, or deal in human trafficking or illegal drugs online will be jailed and fined.

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