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Kuwait to mandate DNA test for all visitors for “security” reasons

April 19, 2016

Traveling to Kuwait just got weirder and difficult (in addition to getting a visa). Kuwait will implement the mandatory DNA testing for everyone in the country, including tourists beginning sometime this year, as per Kuwait Times.

Kuwait

Here are some details:
When will this be effective?
The actual implementation date depends on the cabinet when it approves the draft in accordance to recommendations made in the law.

Who is this applicable to?
The law will require everyone – including citizens – to submit a DNA sample in an effort to increase security, including foreign visitors (tourists, business, etc.)

Where will it happen?
Collection will be done at a special center at Kuwait International Airport (KWI), upon arrival, where in collaboration with the Civil Aviation Department, airlines and embassies, visitors will be advised on their rights and duties towards the DNA law. The Kuwait Times reports that the government will collect a saliva sample or a few drops of blood placed on special cards. From there, your blood or saliva will travel to a lab where it will be tested “according to international scientific and technical methods using special DNA examination equipment.”

Why?
Just for security. The country has stated that the DNA testing won’t be used for genealogical analysis and it won’t impact personal freedoms or privacy.

Can I refuse?
Not really. If you choose to refuse the test, it’s not clear what the consequences are for rejecting the DNA test. But authorities say that they will notify relevant authorities about whoever refuses to give a sample so that they could apply the measures stipulated in the law. All embassies, consulates and airlines will be mandated to let visitors know so they have a good idea about the law and the possible consequences of rejecting its procedures.

We will update this post when we get more details. In the meanwhile, leave your feedback and thoughts in comments below.



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