Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait)

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Kuwait Liberation Medal
Kuwait Liberation Medal (Fifth Class).pngKuwait Liberation Medal (Fifth Class), reverse.png
Obverse and reverse of the medal, Fifth Class
Awarded by  Kuwait
TypeFive class award
EligibilityMilitary personnel who served during the Liberation of Kuwait, 1990-91
Awarded forCampaign service
Campaign(s)Persian Gulf War
StatusNo longer awarded
Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait) ribbon.svg
Ribbon variant of the Kuwait Liberation Medal
Obverse of the medal, Fourth Class
Reverse of the medal, Fourth Class

The Wisam Al-Tahrir (Arabic: وسام التحريرWisām al-Taḥrīr) (Liberation Medal) was issued by the government of Kuwait for service during the Liberation of Kuwait campaign, 1990–91.

Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait)[edit]


The Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait) was approved by the Kuwait Council of Ministers for award in five classes, generally according to the rank of the recipient; the medal was offered by the Chief of Staff of the Kuwait Armed Forces on July 16, 1994.

A nation of seafarers and ship builders, Kuwait chose as their coat of arms, the traditional dhow. Falconry is the sport of Kings in the Persian Gulf, and the falcon in the arms is seen as a symbol of Kuwaiti prowess; the official symbolism of the colors is that black symbolizes battlefields, white is for deeds, green is for the meadows, and red is for the blood of Kuwait's enemies.

Fifth Class
  • Medal: A Bronze medal with enamel, 1 9/16 inches (40 mm) in diameter suspended from a bar by a wreath. The obverse bears the Coat of Arms of the State of Kuwait; the Coat of Arms consists of the shield of the flag design in color superimposed on a falcon with wings displayed. The falcon supports a disk containing a sailing ship with the full name of the State written at the top of the disk. At the top of the medal is the inscription "1991 LIBERATION MEDAL" in Arabic letters; the reverse side is the map of Kuwait on a rayed background.
  • Ribbon: The ribbon is the pattern of the flag of the State of Kuwait and consists of three equal stripes 29/64 inch (11.5 mm) each of the following colors: Old Glory Red 67156; White 67101; and Irish Green 67189. A black trapezium is at the top of the ribbon drape and service ribbon.
  • Intended for non-commissioned personnel.
Fourth Class
  • A dull grey metal medal, suspended from a bar engraved with laurel leaves. The obverse bears a fully sized, five pointed star over a pattern of engraved rays with the centre containing the same falcon and dhow emblem as the fifth class medal and the reverse the same map and rayed background.
  • Intended for warrant and junior commissioned officers.
Third Class
  • A bright gilt medal of similar design to the fourth class medal. The points of the star are considerably rounded and, instead of the rayed background, the medal is pierced between the star and the outer circle.
  • Intended for field-grade and equivalent officers.
Second Class
  • Medal: A golden star overlaying a laurel wreath. The centre emblem is significantly smaller than for the lower classes of medal. There is Arabic writing above and below the centre emblem; the star is suspended directly from the ribbon, by a ring attached to the wreath.
  • Ribbon: Of identical pattern to the ribbons for the lower orders, this now bears a miniature of the centre emblem in gold-coloured metal and enamel.
  • Intended for one and two star officers.
First Class
  • Medal: A neck decoration of large pattern. Similar to the second class medal but the star is enamelled in with red points and a white circle surrounding the centre emblem; the white circle contains a geometric outer pattern in gold and Arabic writing above the centre. Pierced rays, of differing lengths, lie behind the wreath; the star is suspended from its high point.
  • Ribbon: Similar to that for the lower awards but double ended. No miniature emblem.
  • Intended for three and four star officers.


The Australian Government has decreed that Australian personnel may accept their medals as a keepsake, but permission to wear them in uniform has so far been refused;[1] this is because the Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia) was approved to wear in uniform prior to the Kuwait issued medal being issued.

It was potentially due to a clerical error within the Australian Government that medals were issued to serving personnel who had not participated in eligible operations, due to crew change-outs on participating ships.


The Canadian Government has decreed that Canadian personnel may accept their medals as a keepsake, but permission to wear them in uniform has so far been refused.[2]

Four Canadians were permitted by the Government of Canada to wear their medals.


France accepted all grades version for their personnel according to their rank at the time of Operation Desert Storm, permission to wear them in uniform has been granted.

United Kingdom[edit]

HM Government has decreed that British personnel may accept their medals as a keepsake but, as a UK campaign medal, the Gulf Medal, was issued, permission to wear the medal or ribbon has not been granted.[3]

United States[edit]

The US accepted only the fifth grade version for all personnel.

Criteria: Awarded to members of the Military Coalition who served in support of Operation Desert Shield or Desert Storm in one or more of the following areas between 2 August 1990 and 31 August 1993: Persian Gulf, Red Sea, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Aden, that portion of the Arabian Sea that lies north of 10 degrees north latitude and west of 68 degrees east longitude, as well as the total land areas of Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates. To be eligible,[4] a service member must have been:[5]

(1) attached to or regularly serving for one or more days with an organization participating in ground/shore (military) operations;
(2) attached to or regularly serving for one or more days aboard a naval vessel directly supporting military operations;
(3) actually participating as a crew member in one or more aerial flights directly supporting military operations in the areas designated above;
(4) serving on temporary duty for 30 consecutive days or 60 nonconsecutive days. These time limitations may be waived for members participating in actual combat operations.

The Government of Kuwait offered the Kuwait Liberation Medal to members of the Armed Forces of the United States by letter dated 16 July 1994; the medal was accepted by Secretary of Defense William J. Perry per memorandum dated 16 March 1995.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Awards Issued After 1945 Grouped by Geographic Location". Defence Honours & Awards. Australian Government Department of Defence. Retrieved 12 March 2018.
  2. ^ Personnel, Government of Canada, National Defence, Chief Military. "Frequently Asked Questions". www.cmp-cpm.forces.gc.ca.
  3. ^ "Post World War 2 campaign medals". Medals: campaigns, descriptions and eligibility. HM Government. Retrieved 12 March 2018.
  4. ^ "Kuwait Liberation Medal-Kuwait". edocket.access.gpo.gov.
  5. ^ Air Force Personnel Center Kuwait Liberation Medal--Kuwait Archived 2011-06-19 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Data" (PDF). media.defense.gov. 2017.