A group of prominent Kuwaiti Islamists, including the former head of the Sunni Muslim Salafist movement Hakim Al Mtayri, announced the formation of the Umma Party on January 29. The party's declared goals are to establish an Islamic society, remove foreign troops from the Gulf region, implement Islamic law, and support political pluralism. The party filed for a permit, although political parties are banned in Kuwait and there are no constitutional provisions or regulatory laws to deal with the issue. Following recent clashes between police and militants in Kuwait, the government is cracking down on extremists opposed to the presence of foreign troops in the region. The government imposed a travel ban on all 15 members of the Umma Party, pending a decision by the Constitutional Court on the group’s legal status.
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