x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Kuwaiti MPs propose bikini ban on beach

Islamist parliamentarians in Kuwait propose a law that would punish women who wore bikinis at the beach with up to one year in prison.

Kuwait City // Islamist parliamentarians yesterday proposed a law that would punish women who wore bikinis at the beach with up to one year in prison.

The five MPs who presented the bill complained of "a noticeable increase in indecent behaviour by women" along beaches. They said there was no clear law that empowered coast guards to ensure public morals were respected.

"Some women wear outrageous clothes, commit indecent acts and engage in emotionally provocative behaviour," the proposal said. The MPs complained about women singing and dancing and bringing their dogs to the beach.

The law would ban women from wearing "inappropriate swimming suits" on beaches. Nudity, exposure of the chest and "shameful behaviour" would also be illegal, and offenders could face one year in prison or a fine of 1,000 Kuwaiti dinars (Dh13,000).

The law did not specify if the regulations were to apply to public or private beaches.

Aseel al Awadhi, a liberal member of the parliament, said the bill was unconstitutional and interfered with personal freedom.

"This loosely worded bill would prevent women, not men, from wearing swimsuits," she said, adding that "the bill also does not specify what types of swimsuit are inappropriate to wear".

 

jcalderwood@thenational.ae