LGBT rights in Kuwait

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LGBT rights in Kuwait Kuwait
Same-sex sexual activity legal? de-facto illegal
Not specifically outlawed, but prosecuted under the "debauchery" law with jail time up to 6 years
Family rights

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) persons in Kuwait may face challenges not experienced by non-LGBT Kuwaitis. Homosexuality is not specifically outlawed but homosexuals are prosecuted under the "debauchery" law.


Homosexuality is not specifically outlawed, but homosexuals are prosecuted under the "debauchery" law.

  • Article 193 of the Penal Code punishes debauchery with up to six years imprisonment.
  • Article 198 prohibits "imitating the appearance of a member of the opposite sex" with fines and or imprisonment.


Before 2008, cross-dressing was legal in Kuwait. In 2008, cross-dressing in public became illegal.

HIV/AIDS issues[edit]

In 1988, the Kuwaiti Ministry of Public Health published a report on HIV infections in Kuwait,[1] especially the person's nationality, marital status and sexual orientation. In 2004 a United Nations report on HIV in Kuwait found that about six percent of known transmission cases were the result of unprotected sexual contact between men.[2]

In 1992, the Kuwaiti national assembly outlawed the knowing transmission of HIV to another person.

LGBT rights movement in Kuwait[edit]

In 2007, the Al Arabiya news service reported that a group of Kuwaitis had applied for a permit to form a new association that would stand up for the rights of LGBT Kuwaitis. All such interest groups or clubs have to be approved by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, which has not formally replied.

See also[edit]