Kuwait Reinstates Previous Parliament After Elections Declared Illegal
Kuwait’s internal political crisis deepened Wednesday when the constitutional court ruled that last February’s parliamentary election was illegal and instead reinstated the previous parliament. The court ordered that the move by Emir Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah to dissolve the previous government earlier this week was unconstitutional. Sheikh Sabah had suspended the government Monday after a drawn out dispute between the cabinet and lawmakers, in which two cabinet ministers had resigned over accusation of irregularities by opposition MPs.
Meanwhile, the U.S. plans to expand its military pressence in Kuwait to 13,500 troops in response to emergencies in the region. A study by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee examined the U.S. relationship with Kuwait among other states in the region. According to the report, there currently are about 15,000 U.S. forces in Kuwait at Camp Arifjan, Ali Al Salem Air Base and Camp Buehring, giving the United States staging hubs, training ranges and locations to provide logistical support. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has said he envisions about 40,000 troops stationed in the Middle East region after the withdrawal from Iraq.