A Kuwaiti man has been sentenced to seven years in prison following several tweets, which were deemed to slander Shi’ite Muslims. Mohammad Al Mulaifi was imprisoned for 21 days in February pending investigation into a number of charges, including broadcasting false information, insulting the Shi’ite faith, and undermining Kuwait’s image.
Al Mulaifi reportedly apologized to Shi’ite Muslims for the tweets, saying his words were misinterpreted. The writer didn’t deliberately try to insult the family or the prophet Muhammad, he said. However, that did not quell anger from his critics, some of whom have called for his citizenship to be revoked, The Next Web reported
Al Mulaifi was found guilty of insulting members of the Kuwaiti society by claiming they had allegiances with other countries based on their backgrounds and religious beliefs. He was also charged with denigrating the Shi’ite sect, broadcasting false information, and attacking a lawmaker.
He was sentenced to seven years in prison with hard labor. He was also ordered to pay a KD 50 fine ($180 U.S. dollars) and to pay temporary compensation of KD 5,001 ($17,963).
Officials in Kuwait have been cracking down on citizens who post disagreeable opinions online. Back in October, it was revealed at least three men had been arrested last fall over personal views shared on social forums like YouTube and Twitter.
Meanwhile, last month, another man was arrested over tweets that allegedly insulted the prophet Muhammad and defamed Islam.
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