Politicians, media professionals and activists in Kuwait urged the Minister of Information to cancel the decision of the Kuwait News Agency, which obligated its employees, especially Shias to work (compulsory) during the day of Ashura, as it infringes on their religious freedoms.
Activists said in comments and blogs followed by (Shia Waves News Agency): “Kuwait has known since ancient times to exempt the children of the Shias in the country from work and study during the day of Ashura, in consideration of their religious rights and their preoccupation with reviving the painful tragedy of Ashura.”
Activists called for urgent action to demand that the painful Ashura day be made an official holiday in the country and for all citizens without exception.
Politicians condemned this decision, including former MP Saleh Al-Ashour, and demanded that the agency’s management be held accountable.
Al-Ashour addressed the Minister of Information to cancel this decision, as it is unacceptable and raises sectarianism.
He commented in a tweet on Twitter by saying: “Absence on normal days is allowed and is not focused on, but on the tenth of Muharram, the memorial of the martyrdom of Imam Hussein (peace be upon him) is not allowed, and if an employee is absent, he is punished and his salary is deducted.”
It is worth noting that earlier the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) issued an official document, in which it called on all of its departments to obligate their employees to come to work on the tenth of Muharram, and to hold accountable those who were absent.