Infographic: Voting in the Gulf

Infographic: Voting in the Gulf
Who gets to vote in the Gulf and what do they vote for?
1 min read
13 May, 2015
Who gets to vote in the Gulf and for what? [Click to enlarge]
Qatar went to the polls on Wednesday to vote for a largely powerless municipal council.

The council has an advisory role, and elections have taken place every four years, since 1999.

All Gulf Arab states have elections for some form of representative body, but none of these have supreme authority in any of the countries - all of which are run by hereditary monarchs or emirs.

Kuwait has the strongest parliament, the National Assembly, which has the power to challenge the emir's authority, and must give its approval for the appointment of the crown prince. Bahrain also has a relatively powerful parliament.

Oman and the United Arab Emirates have elected national bodies, but these are very weak and have little authority, especially in the UAE.

Saudi Arabia only votes for town councils, which are largely powerless. Women are to be allowed to vote and stand for positions on these councils for the first time this year.