A Kuwaiti appeals court has freed an opposition leader on bail. The leader is at the center of a standoff politically. The court delayed a verdict on the leader for a yet to be determined date. The opposition leader was tried for insulting the emir.
Mussallam al-Barrak was sentenced to five years for insulting the Gulf state’s emir, but has thus far evaded any arrest. The delay is the best the current government could have hoped for. It appeases opposition supporters, of which many have threatened large-scale demonstrations if the courts or government put Barrak in prison.
However, it might change the government’s threat of sending him to jail that it has used as a bargaining tool, which is very important for them when in negotiations during political standoffs.
Opposition supporters reacted to the decision by the court by cheering and were pleased that the diverse opposition in the country had rallied behind Barrak.
Supporters of Barrack and the opposition in general will be uneasy until the court gives its final verdict. A date has not been set for the next hearing.
With the decision to put off the sentencing, both sides are given a chance to reach some sort of agreement, which could help them create a lighter sentence or even a suspended one, which could ease tensions between the two.