The country had been thrown into a political crisis earlier in the week, when the entire cabinet resigned over a dispute with the National Assembly (parliament).

Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, the emir of Kuwait, confirmed in a televised speech that he had dissolved parliament under article 107 of the constitution, in order to safeguard national unity. He urged politicians to cooperate more closely in the future.

“We have always instructed the brothers in the legislative and executive authorities … to cooperate constructively and to promote dialogue and joint action for the sake of the country, its security and stability,” he said, according to the official Kuna news agency.

Deputy Premier and State Minister for Cabinet Affairs Faisal Al-Hajji Bukadhour later added that the new elections will be held on 17 May.