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Criminal Justice Response to Allegations of Sexual Violence in Kuwait

Alqattan, Eiman Khaled (2015) Criminal Justice Response to Allegations of Sexual Violence in Kuwait. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Abstract

Although Kuwaiti Criminal Procedural Code No. 17/1960 explains the role that criminal justice system personnel should play in the pre-trial process of investigating criminal allegations, Kuwaiti officials have a large degree of discretion when investigating sexual violence allegations. In fact, there is little legal documentation and few guidelines to support the way in which officials handle sexual violence cases in Kuwait. Given this lack of guidance, the present thesis examines the response of the criminal justice system to women’s allegations of sexual violence in Kuwait during the pre-trial process, an important topic thus far neglected by scholars. By deriving qualitative data from interviews with personnel from the Kuwaiti criminal justice system, the study investigates the characteristics of a complaint of sexual violence that contribute to such a case being sent to court or dismissed. It also explores the perceptions of both sexual violence and its complainants and defendants held by criminal justice system personnel. Further, because the extent and type of discrimination vary based on whether a woman is a Kuwaiti citizen or non-citizen, the study examines the similarities and differences between the official responses to citizens’ and non-citizens’ allegations. In addition, the study quantitatively analyses the content of judgments released by the Kuwaiti Supreme Court aiming to examine common characteristics that might have contributed to the decision to send certain allegations to court. The findings of the study reveal that allegations of sexual violence rarely proceed beyond the pre-trial process. The study, moreover, finds that the reasons for not sending allegations made by Kuwaiti citizens to court are completely different from those for not proceeding with non-citizen cases. Finally, in order to improve responses to sexual violence allegations in Kuwait, this thesis suggests various policies and practical recommendations, many of which are lessons drawn from England and Wales.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law (Leeds) > School of Law (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law (Leeds) > School of Law (Leeds) > Centre for Criminal Justice Studies (Leeds)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.660100
Depositing User: Miss Eiman Alqattan
Date Deposited: 17 Aug 2015 09:00
Last Modified: 07 Feb 2017 10:34
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/9584

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