Opposition groups in Kuwait said they have successfully boycotted a parliamentary election held under a new electoral law.  

Election officials said the turnout for Saturday's election was lighter than usual with about 39 percent of eligible voters participating. Turnout for a parliamentary vote earlier this year was nearly 60 percent.

Kuwaitis voted for all 50 of the Gulf emirate's parliament seats. Shi'ite minority candidates won about one-third of the seats, their biggest tally ever.  

The opposition said the vote favors supporters of the Western-backed emir, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah. The long-ruling al-Sabah family already controls the Kuwaiti Cabinet.

In October, the emir used emergency powers to cut the number of votes per citizen from four to one. Tens of thousands of anti-government protesters denounced the move, saying such changes would undercut their rising clout in the oil-rich nation.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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