Kuwait holds elections after parliament dissolution
The polls – where around 305 candidates including 22 women are competing for 50 seats in five constituencies - are the sixth in 10 years, which reflects the political crises the Gulf Arab state has faced.
The elections come after Crown Prince Sheikh Meshal al-Ahmad al-Jaber Al-Sabah dissolved parliament in August following disputes between lawmakers and the government.
Following the dissolution, al-Sabah promised authorities would not interfere in the election or the new parliament.
Some opposition figures, who previously removed themselves from elections as they accused authorities of meddling in parliamentary matters, were encouraged to stand again following the crown prince’s promises.
This includes People's Action Movement candidate Mohammad Musaed Al-Dossari, who was quoted by AFP as saying al-Sabah’s statement "encouraged the political groups and MPs who had been boycotting to return to run in the elections".
The election results are due to be announced on Friday.
The opposition - which mostly consists of Islamist politicians - won 24 seats out of 50 in the previous polls.
Political stability in Kuwait has traditionally depended on cooperation between the government and parliament, the Gulf region's most lively legislature.
Deadlock between government and parliament in Kuwait has often led to cabinet reshuffles and dissolutions of the legislature over the decades, hampering investment and reforms. The last time parliament was dissolved was in 2016.