Kuwait holds off converting cemeteries into parks

The Kuwait City Municipal Council intends to convert 50 old and unused cemeteries into parks, but has put its plans on hold following protests against the same

Kuwait has delayed its plans to convert cemeteries into parks. [Representational image]
Kuwait has delayed its plans to convert cemeteries into parks. [Representational image]

The Kuwait City Municipal Council is working on a plan to convert old cemeteries into parks, relocate the city’s zoo, and build new housing units. 

However, the plan to convert 50 cemeteries into public parks has been put on hold following protests over the developments. 

Only cemeteries in three areas are in use out of the total 50, according to Arabian Business.

Speaking to Kuwait Times, Muhalhal Al Khaled, director of the Municipal Council, said: “There is a rule that after 50 years of disuse, a cemetery goes out of service and can be changed into a park.

"An example is the Baladiya Park, which was originally a graveyard. Later, a fatwa was issued forbidding this change, and ideas were proposed to build multi-storey car parks on cemetery grounds.

"Many conflicts ensued, so the municipality preferred not to execute these projects and avoid problems. So we only planted flowers on top of the gravesites.

“One cemetery is in Jahra, three in Sulaibikhat for Sunnis, Shiites and non-Muslims, and one in Subhan. All other cemeteries are abandoned and not used anymore," Khaled continued. 

He added that the Sulaibikhat cemetery would expand from the boundary wall to Jahra Road and the mosque there would be shifted to the residential area in Nahda.

“The new expansion of the Sulaibikhat cemetery will include the non-Muslim cemetery,” he said, according to the report.  

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