Compulsory Collection of DNA for All – Is Kuwait A Test Case For Other Countries?

1 kuwait bombing

On the 26th of June 2015 a deadly blast hit the Shia Imam Sadiq mosque in Kuwait City after Friday prayers. At least eight people were killed.

Al Jazeera reports:

Saad al-Ajmi, Kuwait’s former information minister…. no country was “immune from terrorism”, and that Kuwait had “a good record” in its relationship between Sunni and Shia groups, and was a small country with good security without widespread dissent. And… “I think that those who want to tip the whole region ablaze in a sectarian war would be behind this attack because that is their agenda.”

Just a few days go by…. then

The DailyMail.co.uk reports in “EVERYONE living in Kuwait is ordered to supply a DNA sample” (2/7/15):

All citizens in Kuwait will be legally required to give a DNA sample to the country’s police force in an attempt to make it easier for security services to solve crimes in the country. The new law, passed through by the Kuwaiti parliament, also includes expatriates living in the small Gulf State.

dna

The speed with which the law was “created” and passed is suspiciously stunning.

The legislation passed on Wednesday (1 July 2015) after a request by the government for such a move to help the country’s security agencies. A sum of $400 million emergency funding has been earmarked for the execution of the law to gather the DNA from the 1.3 million citizens and 2.9 million foreign residents in the Arab country.

The law also stipulates that the individuals who refuse to comply with the legislation will face a sentence of one year in prison and a fine of up to US$33,000 (about €30,000). People who give fake samples can also be incarcerated for seven years.

I’m also not sure how DNA collection is going to solve suicide bombers. And I wonder if another “entity” encouraged the Kuwaiti government to write this law.

However…

In Australia, DNA collection is already in existence. This from The Western Australian Legal Aid Handbook:

“The law says that you may be requested to give a DNA sample in certain circumstances.  If a DNA sample is requested from you, you can agree (consent) to the request.  If you do not consent, you can be required to provide a sample if you:

  • are suspected of, but have not been charged with, committing a serious offence and a senior officer orders you to give a mouth cell sample or a sample of hair from your head, or a warrant is obtained for a blood sample or a sample of pubic hair to be taken
  • are charged with a serious offence, or
  • have been convicted of a serious offence within the last six months (mouth cell sample or hair sample only).

New South Wales police are collecting DNA samples from thousands of criminals with spent convictions to help solve cold cases and future crimes – and to build a comprehensive DNA database.

Civil liberties advocates have criticised the program for casting too wide a net and taking samples from people who were, in many cases, rehabilitated.

We will have to see if other countries start following Kuwait’s example.

(Thank you to one of our readers for alerting us to this topic)

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. Yes, many countries in the last few months have published off-the-shelf legislation, for example to criminalize dissent. Dee made a stink when George Brandish brandished it last December. We must ask her to follow up on the Bela Vista incident.

  2. I have a friend in South Australia who was FORCED to give an oral DNA sample for driving whilst disqualified even though the original charge which caused the disqualification of licence has NOT BEEN HEARD and NO COURT DATE GIVEN?

    In effect they have been found guilty of a charge without having been given a fair and open trial as per the Magistrates Court Act of South Australia?

    They are now considering assault charges against the Senior Officer who forced this upon them!

    • That’s outrageous. Was there a “hair” option?

      • No! They advised they would forcibly hold their mouth open and stick a cotton bud in their mouth and extract their DNA. They complied only because they had their two children being held captive (in another room being looked after by these criminals). The children are aged 5 and 7.

        • Sorry, I should not have indicated that the hair option was less. It is far less traumatic and humiliating than what happened to your friend, but the real invasion IMHO is the stealing of the extremely private informtion: a person’s DNA, via hair , swab, or whatever.

          Thank you for yor outrage, Mark. i suppose assault was committed. Did you see our strip-search article in the Magna Charta series? Ask Gumshoe website for “Albert Florence” (the name of the stripee). Proof that the US high court is against the people.

  3. You know it isn’t the Kuwaitis that thought this up.
    And how did the pubic hair get into it?

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