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Originally published Wednesday, April 10, 2013 at 3:01 AM

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Report: Kuwait proposes $1M fine for emir insults

Kuwait's information minister is defending a proposed media law that reports say could bring fines of about $1 million for insulting the Gulf nation's emir and other members of the ruling family.

The Associated Press

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KUWAIT CITY —

Kuwait's information minister is defending a proposed media law that reports say could bring fines of about $1 million for insulting the Gulf nation's emir and other members of the ruling family.

The government has not given details of the draft regulations, which would cover both traditional media and online posts.

But the liberal Kuwait daily Qabas reported on Wednesday that the proposed codes also could include fines reaching about $700,000 for stirring internal tensions.

Kuwait's move follows escalating Internet crackdowns, including prison sentences for Twitter posts ruled insulting to the emir.

The official Kuwait News Agency quoted Information Minister Salman Al Sabah as claiming the proposed rules will not stifle free expression and seek to elevate discourse in media.

The proposal still needs approval by parliament and Kuwait's emir.

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