Kuwait new DNA testing mandatory for all residents, expats and visitors

Published:  22 Aug at 6 PM
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The Kuwaiti government now has ultra-modern DNA sampling and testing technology and will require everyone in the emirate to be tested.

Saliva will be collected from Kuwaiti nationals, expat workers and Bedouin tribes before the requirement is rolled out to include all visitors to the emirate. According to the ministry involved, the results of the samples will only be available to police, public prosecutors and the judiciary if requested.

According to the emirate’s Ministry of the Interior, it’s expected that many thousands of Kuwaiti citizens will attempt to avoid the DNA test as they fear they may be stripped of fraudulently obtained citizenships. Around 200,000 nationals are believed to be living illegally in the country, with the ministry stating those who refuse to be tested will lose their citizenship as a result.

In addition, a travel ban covering all GCC states will be imposed, and those who refuse to be tested will also have their free medical treatment withdrawn, all transactions will be banned and their children will not be able to attend government schools. If they are working in government offices, their contracts will be terminated.

The innovation is part of a reform of Kuwait’s demographic structure, which is expected to result in limiting the number of years expats will be allowed to work in the country. Exceptions may well be made for other Gulf State citizens as well as for Europeans, and changes in the rules governing dependent and other visa types are expected as a result.

News of the mandatory tests, linked to the bringing in of new-style electronic passports, is reported to have already resulted in an exodus of residents with something to hide. Houses and other properties are being put up for sale in a rush to relocate ,and children are being enrolled in schools located in other GCC countries.
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