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Kuwait City: Kuwait’s cabinet has resigned and parliament has been dissolved, triggering early elections following disputes between MPs and the government over fuel price increases in the oil-rich country.

Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah issued a decree on Sunday to dissolve the parliament, a few hours after an emergency government meeting, BBC cited the state-run Kuwait News Agency, or KUNA as reporting.

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As oil prices around the world stay low, Kuwait’s government has cut some benefits including fuel subsidies, hiking the cost of petrol by up to 80%. This led to growing dissent.

Kuwait’s parliament has the most powers of any elected body in the Gulf region, but the ruling al-Sabah family has the final word over all key decisions and has dissolved the legislature repeatedly in the past.

The government would have completed its normal four-year term in July 2017.

Earlier on Sunday, Speaker Marzouq al-Ghanem called for early elections, saying the country faces “economic security and regional challenges” and “the only way” to deal with them was to “form a new government line-up”.

First Published | 16 October 2016 10:29 PM
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emergency government meeting

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Marzouq al-Ghanem

Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah

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