Tough line by Kuwaitis sees country's expat population fall
Expats have fled Kuwait in substantial numbers in the past year, new official figures show.
And local reports suggest that the fall of almost one-fifth in the Middle Eastern state's expat population is down to tougher lines being taken by law enforcement agencies against people who break Kuwaiti laws.
This includes deporting people whose visas are not correct, as well as some who have been involved in criminal activity, according to the Daily Telegraph.
It quoted an official who told The Kuwait Times: "There are many bogus companies that are trafficking workers, thereby spoiling Kuwait’s reputation".
Nevertheless, the Telegraph pointed out, Kuwait is still largely dependent on foreign labour, and two-thirds of its 3.6 million population are understood to be of foreign origin.
The newspaper spoke to Dr Kristian Coates-Ulrichsen, an expert on Kuwait at the London School of Economics, who believed that the security crackdown could be related to last year's 'Arab Spring' uprisings, which had resulted in "governments throughout the region [tightening] their border controls, and [taking] measures to exclude those workers found to have entered illegally".
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