A Kuwaiti citizen has been arrested for slapping an Egyptian expatriate (expat) at a supermarket in Kuwait, according to Nabila Makram, Egypt’s Minister of State for Emigration and Egyptian Expatriates’ Affairs.
In a televised interview on Sunday, Makram said the incident began when a Kuwaiti citizen asked to pay for his purchases at the Sabah Al-Ahmad Cooperative Supermarket with a bank card that was not his own. When the Egyptian cashier at the supermarket refused to use the card for payment, as based on the supermarket’s policy, the Kuwaiti slapped him three times on the face.
On Sunday, a CCTV video of the incident, circulated on social media platforms, showed the Kuwaiti verbally and physically assaulting the Egyptian worker, who remained behind the till.
The video, which has sparked outrage on social media, showed the young Egyptian expat being slapped three times before security guards, customers, and a woman intervened to stop the assault.
In response to the video, and as a rejection of abuses to expat rights, Nasser Al-Otaibi, head of the Sabah Al-Ahmad Cooperative Supermarket, announced his resignation from his position.
Following the incident, Makram contacted Egypt’s Consul General in Kuwait, Ambassador Hesham Osran, and thanked him for taking swift action on the incident.
The minister confirmed that such incidents are individual and do not represent the strong bilateral relations between Egypt and Kuwait. She added that hundreds of thousands of Egyptian expatriates live and work in Kuwait, some having done so for many years.
Al Shall Financial and Economic Consulting reported in April that the 10,000 Egyptians currently in Kuwait represent the second largest foreign community in the GCC country. They represent 20.8% of the country’s total expatriate labour force, behind the 917,000 Indians living in Kuwait.