Kuwaiti parliamentary election, December 2012
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Turnout was 40.3%, the lowest in the Kuwaiti election history. The opposition claimed an even lower turnout of 26.7% after tens of thousands of people boycotted the election. The protest was part of the wider unrest that is ongoing since February 2011. Shafeeq Ghabra, professor at the Faculty of Political Sciences at Kuwait University said that, "it's clear that the boycott was very successful." The opposition rejected a unilateral amendment of the electoral law that reduced the number of votes per person from four to one.
Because of the boycott, the opposition composed of Islamists and liberals will have no representatives in the 50-seat Kuwaiti Parliament. The mass boycott was a major blow to Kuwait's efforts to represent itself as more democratic than its neighbours.
In the election, the Shi'a minority in Kuwait won 17 out of 50 seats in the parliament. For the first time they gained more than one third of the seats. At the scrapped February election they won seven seats. Sunni Islamists were reduced to a minority as compared to the previous 2009 election, where they won 23 seats. Three women also entered the Parliament compared to men-only from the February election, but their number decreased compared to the 2009 election.
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