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Kuwait: Bedoon Light Candles for Freedom

Categories: Middle East & North Africa, Kuwait, Digital Activism, Human Rights, Photography, Politics, Protest

As a protest against discriminatory state policies and arbitrary arrests, the stateless community in Kuwait (Bedoon) decided to light candles in their houses and post pictures of them on Twitter. The idea was suggested [1] by blogger 7anthala Al-Bedoon who thought it would be a message to the authorities that “the struggle is going on and that their peaceful objections will not end until they get their rights”.

On Wednesday 4 April, a flood of pictures went on Twitter as people expressed themselves variously with candles using the hashtag #شمعة_حرية_وأمل [2] meaning “a candle of freedom and hope”.

Here are some of the pictures shared:


Picture posted by @m_mubher has a line by Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish: We do what the prisoners and the unemployed do; we grow hope.


Two Bedoon students in Jordan write "Bedoon" (without) using candles (posted by @alenazi90)


Posted by @mohammedalouda


"Group 29", a group of Kuwaiti activists focused on Bedoon rights, took this picture in support (posted by @al29ela)


Three girls holding "Until when will we remain stateless?" (posted by @7MODQ8)


Bedoon woman @mayar114 posted this picture saying "Give me my freedom"

The following two pictures were sent to blogger 7anthala:


Picture of the article concerning equality in Kuwait's constitution, with candles


"Not allowed to travel" with the campaign's hashtag

This is a video of a candle being lit by the beach, uploaded by user arzag1 [9]:

And a video of candles and a sign next to a cellphone playing a video of a Bedoon protest, uploaded by user fal3nze [10]: