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Kuwait opposition figure promises new protests

By The Associated Press

This article was published April 12, 2014 at 12:26 p.m.

— A Kuwaiti opposition group led by a former lawmaker convicted of making comments considered insulting to the ruling emir says it plans to launch a series of street protests to press for reform in the Gulf state.

Former lawmaker Musallam al-Barrack announced the plans at a gathering Saturday. He says his reform agenda includes allowing people to run for the position of prime minister. Currently, prime ministers are appointed by the emir and are from the ruling family.

Al-Barrack is known in Kuwait for an October 2012 speech where he suggested that the emir was trying to turn the country into an "autocracy." He was sentenced to 5-years imprisonment, but was allowed to remain free on bail after he refused to surrender to authorities and his supporters fought security forces.

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