ACHR WEEKLY REVIEW

Embargoed for: 15 June 2015
Review: 245/15

Maldives: The case for a resolution at the 29th session of the UN Human Rights Council



Contents

1. Executive summary
2. Background
2.1. The trigger for charging political opponents as terrorists
2.2. Emblematic cases of democratic leaders being charged as terrorists
Case 1: Conviction of Ex-President Mohammed Nasheed as a terrorist
Case 2: Prosecution of Adhaalath Party President Sheikh Imran Abdulla as an alleged terrorist
Case 3: Prosecution of Jumhooree Party Deputy Leader Ameen Ibrahim and Council Member Sobah Rasheed as alleged terrorists
Case 4: Conviction of former Defense Minister Mohamed Nazim under fabricated penal offences of importing and harbouring weapons
2.3. No action against the real terrorists i.e. those joining the Islamic State
2.4. Talks to beguile international community


1. Executive summary

As the UN Human Rights Council holds its 29th session from 15th June 2015 to 3 July 2015, it ought to adopt a resolution on the deplorable human rights situation in Maldives as a consequence of the singular aim of President Abdullah Yameen Abdul Gayoom (known as Abdullah Yameen) of the Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) to sentence key political opponents to long term imprisonment and disqualify them as candidates in the 2018 Presidential elections. Former President Mohammed Nasheed of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) has been sentenced to 13 years imprisonment under trumped up terrorism charges on 13 March 2015[1] while former Defense Minister Mohamed Nazim was sentenced to 11 years imprisonment on 26 March 2015 on trumped up charges of “importing and harbouring weapons”.[2] Further, Adhaalath Party (AP) President Sheikh Imran Abdulla,[3] Jumhooree Party’s (JP) deputy leader Ameen Ibrahim and council member of the JP Sobah Rasheed[4] have been charged with terrorism offences for participating in the May Day rally on 1 May 2015 while companies of Gasim Ibrahim, President of the JP have been fined USD 100 million.[5]

While key democratic leaders have been put behind bars under terrorism charges, President Yameen has taken little or no measures to counter real terrorists: over 200 Maldivians are currently fighting for Islamic State (IS) in Iraq and Syria[6] with at least four of them having died in the fighting.[7] Many of these Jihadists have returned and in February 2015 there was a pro-IS rally in capital Malé, featuring banners that called for the introduction of Shariah law.[8] Whether ex-President Nasheed is also paying the price for exposing participation of the Maldivians in the IS through an interview to The Independent (UK), on 14 September 2014 remains a matter of conjecture.

Judiciary has not been reformed since the days of ex-dictator Maumoon Abdul Gayoom. It has been serving as handmaiden to President Abdullah Yameen, half brother of Abdul Gayoom while Dunya Gayoom, daughter of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom serves as Foreign Minister – a replica of the rule by the Rajapaksa brothers which ended in neighbouring Sri Lanka in January 2015. While the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights term the sentencing of ex-President Nasheed “a rushed process that appears to contravene the Maldives’ own laws and practices and international fair trial standards in a number of respects”[9] the UN Special Rapporteur on Independence of Judges and laws Gabriela Knaul stated that “Mr. Nasheed’s trial …also made a mockery of the State’s own Constitution” and further opined that “the speed of the proceedings combined with the lack of fairness in the procedures lead her to believe in the outcome of the trial may have been pre-determined”.[10]

As this briefing paper is being uploaded, the MDP has been continuing its peaceful protest since 12th June 2015. The offer of talks to the opposition is nothing but an attempt to beguile the international community. President Yameen rejected nomination of ex-President Nasheed as representative of the MDP for the talks despite the same being prerogative of the MDP. The government through Foreign Minister Dunya Maumoon stated that presidential pardon was not possible in a conviction under terrorism charges.[11]

Yet, history is instructive: these repressive measures of President Yameen shall fail to resolve the national political crisis without finding a solution with the MDP. In the meanwhile, the ongoing political instability in Maldives will have serious implications for regional security and stability. Frustrated by political repression, more youths are likely to find succour in the IS with government taking no action against those who had returned from the war fields in Iraq and Syria. Further, President Yameen is not only willing to aid this emerging dangerous situation but also wants to change the current maritime security in the Indian Ocean to ward off international pressure for resolving the national political crisis. This shall have implications far beyond the IS.

The measures taken by President Yameen constitute “gross and systematic violations of human rights” as provided under Operative Paragraph 8 of the General Assembly resolution 60/251 establishing the UN Human Rights Council. The members of the UN Human Rights Council, in particular, European Union considering the European Parliament’s resolution on the situation in Maldives of 27.04.2015,[12] have a responsibility to sponsor a resolution on the human rights situation in Maldives.

ACHR therefore calls upon the members of the UN Human Rights Council to adopt a resolution on the human rights situation in Maldives at the ongoing 29th session, which will, inter alia, demand for the unconditional release of all political prisoners charged with terrorism offences including ex-President Nasheed and former Defense Minister Mohamed Nazim, appointment of a Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in Maldives, and recommendation to the UN General Assembly to suspend the membership of Maldives in the UN Human Rights Council as provided under Operative Paragraph 8 of the General Assembly resolution 60/251 establishing the UN Human Rights Council.

2. Background

2.1. The trigger for charging political opponents as terrorists

The election of President Abdullah Yameen in 2013 was not clean. In the Presidential election held on 7 September 2013, former President Mohamed Nasheed of the MDP secured 45.45 percent of the vote followed by current President Abdulla Yameen of the PPM with 25 per cent and tourism tycoon Gasim Ibrahim of the JP with 24 percent.[13] However, on 11 September, Gasim Ibrahim filed a case at the High Court alleging fraud and vote rigging in the first round, and sought an annulment of the first round.[14] In a controversial judgment on 7 October 2013, the Maldives Supreme Court annulled the 7 September vote citing electoral irregularities[15] based on unreliable evidence, which besides the secret police report, included hearsay and speculative testimony from 14 anonymous witnesses.[16]

Thereafter, the elections was cancelled thrice on 28 September 2013, 19 October 2013 and 10 November 2013 by the Supreme Court with the singular aim of preventing former president Mohamed from returning to power.

In the fresh election held on 9 November 2013, Mohamed Nasheed secured 46.93 per cent (96,747 votes), followed by Abdullah Yameen with 29.73 per cent (61,295 votes) and Gasim Ibrahim with 23.34 per cent (48,131 votes).[17]

The run-off election was slated between Nasheed and Yameen on 10 November 2013. However, Gasim Ibrahim who had neither the locus standi nor cause of action as he was not a candidatefiled a petition before the Supreme Court seeking postponement of run-off vote on the ground that he would not get time to either to campaign or to tell his supporters which of the other presidential candidate he support.[18] The Supreme Court postponed the run-off vote to 16 November 2013. Nonetheless, shortly before the 16 November election, Gasim Ibrahim announced his support for Mr. Yameen’s candidacy following a coalition agreement between the parties.[20] In the run-off vote on 16 November 2013, President Abdullah Yameen Abdul Gayoom won with 51.3% of the votes while former President Mohamed Nasheed lost with 48.6% of the votes.[21] Though the vote was effectively rigged, Nasheed gracefully accepted the outcome.

After the elections, the PPM, the JP, the Maldives Development Alliance (MDA) and the AP united together under the banner ‘Progressive Coalition’ to form the government immediately after the 16 November 2013 elections.[22] But the bonhomie between the PPM and the JP was short lived. On 28 May 2014, the PPM announced the breakup of its coalition deal with the JP headed by business tycoon Gasim Ibrahim after Abdulla Maseeh Mohamed of the PPM decided to contest for the speaker’s post of the new parliament while the Progressive Coalition comprising the PPM, the MDA and the AP continued. The PPM accused Gasim Ibrahim of hobnobbing with the opposition MDP.[23] Further, the ruling PPM MP Abdulla Maseeh Mohamed defeated Gasim in the election of Speaker of the 18th People’s Majlis.[24] Soon after the break-up of their alliance, the ruling PPM began purging the ministers belonging to the JP with 9 of them being dismissed as of 31 May 2014.[25]

The PPM also caused defection of the opposition MDP, JP and independent Member of Parliament (Majlis) to the PPM. At least seven MPs, including two Ministers, and 15 councilors from the JP defected to the PPM as of February 2015[26].  Four MPs from the opposition MDP also defected to the ruling PPM as of 29 January 2015.[27] JP supremo Gasim Ibrahim also allegedly received death threats from anonymous persons and he blamed political opponents from the ruling PPM behind the threats. The government also seriously harmed his business through various tactics, including termination of contracts signed with his Village group of companies.

The defection of MPs from both the JP and the MDP forced both the parties to come closer. On 16 January 2015, Nasheed pledged to defend Gasim Ibrahim and his party from the government attacks. The MDP accused the government of undermining independent institutions and of threatening Gasim’s business interests as well as his life.[28] On 20 January 2015, the MDP held a rally themed ‘In Defense of the Constitution’ in front Gasim Ibrahim’s residence in order to show solidarity with the JP leader in defending the Constitution.[29] On 26 January 2015, the MDP and the JP have officially agreed to work together in defending the Constitution.[30]

On 1 February 2015, the Maldives Trade Union (MTU) also joined the opposition parties in defence of the Constitution, citing that persistent violations by the government have “eroded crucial checks and balances and accountability mechanisms”.[31] On 7 February 2015, the MDP and the JP signed an agreement to ‘defend the Constitution’ alleging repeated breach of the constitution by the President.[32] Support for the opposition parties started growing as the religious conservative Adhaalath Party, a coalition partner of the ruling PPM, also actively participated in the 3 days demonstrations by the MDP and the JP on 12-14 February 2015. Hundreds of demonstrators gathered on the corner of Fareedhee Magu calling for President Abdullah Yameen’s resignation.[33]

Without the support of Gasim Ibrahim, Abdullah Yameen would not have won the Presidential elections in 2013. The defeat of another dictator in the neigbourhood i.e. Mahinda Rajapakse in the elections held on 9th January 2015 sent alarm bells to President Abdullah Yameen. However, instead of consolidating the remaining time to fulfill the aspirations of the Maldivians, President Yameen decided to take measures to ensure there are no credible opposition candidates left to contest the Presidential election in 2018. In this process, President Yameen has not charged Gasim Ibrahim with terrorism offences but only imposed fine of US$ 100 million to cripple him and fall in line. Gasim is currently participating in the talks offered by the President but the murder of democracy in Maldives is unlikely to wither away.
 

2.2. Emblematic cases of democratic leaders being charged as terrorists

As stated, in order to fulfill singular aim of ensuring that no political opponents are left in the Presidential elections to be held in 2018, President Abdullah Yameen has been charging political opponents under terrorism charges.
 

Case 1: Conviction of Ex-President Mohammed Nasheed as a terrorist

Mohamed Nasheed was initially charged under Section 81 of the Penal Code 1968 for detention of Criminal Court judge Abdulla Mohamed in January 2012 when Nasheed was president.[34] It is pertinent to mention that none of the members of the Maldivian National Defence Force who allegedly detained Abdullah Mohamed or then Defense Minister Mohamed Nazim were charged for the same offence. When requested for any evidence that Nasheed had issued the order for detention of the judge, the Permanent Mission of Maldives told Asian Centre for Human Rights that there were no evidence but an inquiry had stated that verbal orders were issued.[35]

Nonetheless, on 16 February 2015, Prosecutor General Muhthaz Muhsin dropped charges against Nasheed related to the detention of Criminal Court judge Abdulla Mohamed. However, in a complete u-turn on 22 February 2015, Prosecutor General Muhsin filed charges under Article 2(b) of the Prevention of Terrorism Act, 1990 (PTA) against Nasheed on the same matter. Since the charges under Article 81 of the Penal Code of Maldives had already been dropped on 16 February 2015, it is absolutely illegal for the Prosecutor General to indict Nasheed again by invoking Article 2(b) of the PTA, 1990.[36] This shows the indictment is politically motivated.

The trial and conviction of Nasheed thereafter was a foregone conclusion as President Yameen wanted to ensure that Nasheed is convicted for maximum period of time and disqualify him from contesting future elections.
 
On 13 March 2015, a three-judge Criminal Court in Male convicted Maldives’ ex-President Mohamed Nasheed and sentenced him to 13 years imprisonment.[37] On 15 March 2015, the Maldives high court dismissed Nasheed's appeal against his 22 February 2013 arrest order as he refused to enter the courtroom for the first hearing of his appeal case in protest because the hearing was not held in the open court. Ahead of the court hearing scheduled at 2 pm during the day, Nasheed's legal team had requested that the court to hold an open and public hearing. However, only members of Nasheed's legal team and family were allowed inside the court room.[38] On the other hand, on 6 May 2015 Maldivian Foreign Minister Dunya Maumoon told to media persons in Geneva that the Maldives Government would welcome an appeal by its jailed former president against his 13-year sentence. On the issue of releasing Nasheed under a presidential pardon, the foreign minister stated that a presidential pardon was not possible in a conviction under terrorism charges.[39]

Case 2: Prosecution of Adhaalath Party President Sheikh Imran Abdulla as an alleged terrorist

Adhaalath Party President Sheikh Imran is charged under the 1990 Anti-Terrorism Act with threatening to harm police officers and inciting violence at a historic anti-government protest on the occasion of May Day on 1 May 2015. He has been arrested along with 193 other protesters including Ameen Ibrahim, Deputy Leader of the JP and Ali Waheed, Chairman of the MDP.[40] On the initial hearing on 3 June 2015, Imran denied the charges. If convicted, Imran would be the second opposition political leader to be jailed under the Anti-Terrorism law. The charges under this law carry a sentence of between 10 to 15 years in prison.[41]

Case 3:  Prosecution of Jumhooree Party Deputy Leader Ameen Ibrahim and Council Member Sobah Rasheed as alleged terrorists

Jumhooree Party’s deputy leader Ameen Ibrahim and council member Sobah Rasheed have been charged with terrorism as that of Adhaalath Party President Sheikh Imran. The duo has been booked for with threatening to harm police officers and inciting violence at a historic anti-government protest on the occasion of May Day on 1May 2015. Hearings scheduled for Ameen at 8:30 pm and for Sobah at 9:00 pm on 2 May 2015 were cancelled as the duo is out of the country.[42]

Case 4: Conviction of former Defense Minister Mohamed Nazim under fabricated penal offences of importing and harbouring weapons

Former Defense Minister Mohamed Nazim was convicted to 11 years imprisonment on 26 March 2015 by a Criminal Court on trumped up charges of “importing and harbouring weapons.”[43] On 18 January 2015 at about 3.30 AM, police raided the private residence of former Maldives Defense Minister. Police broke opened the door of the apartment and claimed to have recovered a 9mm pistol, three bullets, an explosive device, and a storage device which supposedly holds plans against high-ranking state officials.[44] The police obtained the court order for the raid in the middle of the night under suspicion of “terrorism and harboring weapons and explosives.” When requesting for the court order for the raid, the only mentioned the address of the target, and not the name of who lived in the targeted residence. Chief Justice Abdulla Mohamed whose court endorsed the order for raid had apparently been unaware the police were requesting a raid on the country’s defence minister’s residence when he issued the order. Assistant Police Commissioner Ahmed Areef, head of Police Intelligence told Criminal Court that the directorate did not have any knowledge of the raid until it has been completed.[45]

2.3. No action against the real terrorists i.e. those joining the Islamic State

Maldives has a total population of 3,45,000. There are credible reports that over 200 Maldivians are currently fighting for Islamic State in Iraq and Syria which is quite disproportionate. [46] At least four Maldivians are known to have been killed in fighting in the past eight months, while in February 2015 there was a pro-IS rally in capital Malé, featuring banners that called for the introduction of Shariah law. [47]

Many of those who have joined IS have been returning.

The Government of President Abdullah Yameen has not taken any measures against those joining IS but instead have been imprisoning the political leaders as terrorists.

The political instability has impact on the economy and it shall only drive the youths to organizations such as the IS as the government looks the other way round.

 
2.4. Talks to beguile international community

Amidst growing international pressure to release ex-president Mohamed Nasheed and ex-defence Minister Mohamed Nazim,[48] on 14 May 2015 Maldives President Abdullah Yameen had called on the opposition to begin talks for the “stability and the benefit of Maldivian citizens.”[49] The three opposition parties – the Maldivian Democratic Party, the Jumhooree Party and the Adhaalath Party – welcomed the President’s call.[50]

On 19 May 2015, President Adbullah Yameen set an agenda for talks with opposition political parties. It focused on three aspects - political reconciliation, strengthening the judiciary and legal system and political party participation in economic and social development and did not include negotiations over release of jailed ex-President Mohamed Nasheed and former defence minister Mohamed Nazim. President Yameen also assigned two teams of seven ministers for holding separate discussions with the MDP and with the Jumhooree Party and the religious conservative Adhaalath Party.[51]

The MDP proposed ex-president Mohamed Nasheed as one of its representative for talks with the government[52] but President Yameen rejected the former-president’s nomination on the grounds that he is serving a 13-year jail-term on a terrorism conviction.[53] With stalemate continuing over nomination of Nasheed by the MDP as one of its representatives for talks, future of any talks between the government and the opposition parties remain bleak even as the opposition coalition has called for a third mass protest on 12 June 2015[54] even though it is holding talks with other political parties.

In a meeting of the party’s national council on 1 June 2015, the MDP proposed transferring imprisoned ex-President Mohamed Nasheed and other political leaders to house arrest as “immediate steps to build trust” in a draft roadmap for political reconciliation.[55]

However, given the filing of charges under Anti-Terrorism Act 1990 against three opposition leaders - Adhaalath Party President Sheikh Imran and Ameen Ibrahim, Deputy Leader of Jumhoori Party and JP council member Sobah Rasheed - who have been arrested and detained in connection with anti-government protest on the occasion of May Day on 1 May 2015[56] the talks with the opposition parties hardly evoke any optimism.



Endnotes:

1. Former Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed sentenced to 13 years in jail on terror charges, The Times of India, 14 March 2015; available at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Former-Maldives-president-Mohamed-Nasheed-sentenced-to-13-years-in-jail-on-terror-charges/articleshow/46559406.cms?

2. Nazim sentenced to 11 years in prison, Haveeru Online, 27 March 2015; available at: http://www.haveeru.com.mv/exminister_nazim_arrest/59865

3. Editorial: What we saw and heard on May Day, Minivan News, 3 May 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/editorial-what-we-saw-and-heard-on-may-day-97608#sthash.LPZAjs1U.dpbs

4. Adhaalath party president denies terrorism charges in court, Minivan news, 3 June 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/adhaalath-party-president-denies-terrorism-charges-in-court-99108#sthash.WlkLaS38.DQKpGR7z.dpuf

5. "Foreign loans cancelled due to $100 million fine" – Qasim, 11 April 2015 - See more at: http://www.vaguthu.mv/en/13675#sthash.L80QzQlT.dpuf

6. Islamic State: The Maldives - a recruiting paradise for jihadists, The Independent, 14 September 2014, available at http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/islamic-state-the-maldives--a-recruiting-paradise-for-jihadists-9731574.html

7. Paradise jihadis: Maldives sees surge in young Muslims leaving for Syria, The Guardian, 26 February 2015, available at http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/feb/26/paradise-jihadis-maldives-islamic-extremism-syria

8. Ibid

9. Conduct of trial of Maldives’ ex-President raises serious concerns – Zeid , 18 March 2015, See more at: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=15712&LangID=E#sthash.vFzWAlds.dpuf

10. Maldives: “No democracy is possible without fair and independent justice,” UN rights expert
- See more at: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=15725&LangID=E#sthash.0VKGFggU.dpuf

11. Maldives minister says jailed ex-president Mohamed Nasheed can appeal, won't get pardon, DNAIndia, 7 May 2015; available at: http://www.dnaindia.com/world/report-maldives-minister-says-jailed-ex-president-mohamed-nasheed-can-appeal-won-t-get-pardon-2083970

12. European Parliament resolution on the situation in the Maldives, 27.04.2015 available at: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//TEXT+MOTION+B8-2015-0397+0+DOC+XML+V0//EN 

13 . Maldives: Democracy kidnapped, Himalmag.com, 25 October 2013; available at: http://himalmag.com/maldives-democracy-kidnapped/

14 . Ibid

15 . Maldives top court annuls September 7 presidential vote, sets new election, Reuters.com, 7 October 2013; available at: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/07/us-maldives-election-court-idUSBRE9960S320131007

16 . Supreme Court annuls first round of presidential elections, Minivan News, 8 October 2013; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/supreme-court-annuls-first-round-of-presidential-elections-67952

17 . Maldives Decides 2013 – The re-vote, Minivan News, 9 November 2013, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/maldives-decides-2013-%E2%80%93-live-updates-71138

18 . Maldives presidential polls postponed again, run-off on November 16, NDTV.com, 10 November 2013; available at: http://www.ndtv.com/world-news/maldives-presidential-polls-postponed-again-run-off-on-november-16-540522

19 . Maldives court puts off presidential runoff, The Hindu, 10 November 2013; available at: http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/south-asia/maldives-court-puts-off-presidential-runoff/article5334928.ece

20 . Report of the Commonwealth Observer Group on Maldives Peoples’ Majlis Election, 22 March 2014, available at: http://thecommonwealth.org/sites/default/files/news-items/documents/Maldives%20People%27s%20Majlis%20Election%202014%20Commonwealth%20Observer%20Group%20Report.pdf

21 . Maldives election: Abdulla Yameen wins run-off vote, BBC, 16 November 2013, available at: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-24974019

22 . Report of the Commonwealth Observer Group on Maldives Peoples’ Majlis Election, 22 March 2014, available at: http://thecommonwealth.org/sites/default/files/news-items/documents/Maldives%20People%27s%20Majlis%20Election%202014%20Commonwealth%20Observer%20Group%20Report.pdf

23 . Coalition breakup won't affect government: VP, Haveeru Online, 29 May 2014; available at: http://www.haveeru.com.mv/progressive_coalition/55087

24 . PPM MP Maseeh elected speaker, MDP MP ‘Reeko’ Moosa Manik deputy speaker, Minivan News, 28 May 2014; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/ppm-mp-maseeh-elected-speaker-mdp-mp-reeko-moosa-manik-deputy-speaker-85899

25 . Government begins purge of JP political appointees, Minivan News, 31May 2014; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/government-begins-purge-of-jp-political-appointees-86147

26 . See Environment Minister Thoriq signs for PPM, Minivan News, 4 June 2014, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/environment-minister-thoriq-signs-for-ppm-86439;
Jumhooree Party cabinet member and two more MPs join President Yameen’s PPM, Minivan News, 17 June 2014, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/jumhooree-party-cabinet-member-and-two-more-mps-join-president-yameens-ppm-87122;
PPM secures 43-seat parliament majority with signing of JP MP Muhamma, Minivan News, 10 July 2014, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/ppm-secures-43-seat-parliament-majority-with-signing-of-jp-mp-muhamma-88332; and
Two JP MPs and 15 councilors defect to PPM, Minivan News, 20 February 2015, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/two-jp-mps-and-15-councilors-defect-to-ppm-92875

27 . See Thulhaadhoo MP Nazim Rashad becomes third MDP MP to join PPM, Minivan News, 2 July 2014, available: http://minivannews.com/politics/thulhaadhoo-mp-nazim-rashad-becomes-third-mdp-mp-to-join-ppm-87886 and
Opposition MP Abdulla Yamin joins PPM, Minivan News, 31 January 2015, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/opposition-mp-abdulla-yamin-joins-ppm-92473

28 . Nasheed pledges to defend Gasim from government attacks, Minivan News, 17 January 2015, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/nasheed-pledges-to-defend-gasim-from-government-attacks-92165

29 . MDP holds street rally in front of Gasim’s residence, Minivan News, 21 January 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/mdp-holds-street-rally-in-front-of-gasim%E2%80%99s-residence-92268

30 . MDP and JP reach agreement on defence of Constitution, Minivan News, 27 January 2015, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/mdp-and-jp-reach-agreement-on-defence-of-constitution-92393

31 . Maldives Trade Union joins opposition’s defence of Constitution, Minivan News, 2 February 2015, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/maldives-trade-union-joins-oppositions-defence-of-constitution-92520

32 . Gasim defiant as opposition sign agreement to defend Constitution, Minivan News, 7 February 2015, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/gasim-defiant-as-opposition-sign-agreement-to-defend-constitution-92623

33 . Opposition street demonstrations head into third consecutive night, Minivan News, 14 February 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/opposition-street-demonstrations-head-into-third-consecutive-night-92757

34 . ‘Q&A: The Sentencing of Former President Nasheed’ by the Maldives High Commission, London, 15 March 2015; available at: http://www.maldiveshighcommission.org/news/statements/item/692-q-a-sentencing-of-former-president-nasheed

35 . Meeting between Director of Asian Centre for Human Rights and Permanent Mission of Maldives in Geneva at 5 pm on 24 March 2015.

36. See ACHR Press Release, ‘Former President Nasheed must be released’24 February 2015, http://www.achrweb.org/press/2015/MD01-2015.html 

37. Former Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed sentenced to 13 years in jail on terror charges, The Times of India, 14 March 2015; available at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Former-Maldives-president-Mohamed-Nasheed-sentenced-to-13-years-in-jail-on-terror-charges/articleshow/46559406.cms?

38. Maldives high court throws out former President Mohamed Nasheed's appeal against arrest order, Times of India, 15 March 2015, available at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Maldives-high-court-throws-out-former-President-Mohamed-Nasheeds-appeal-against-arrest-order/articleshow/46573969.cms?

39. Maldives minister says jailed ex-president Mohamed Nasheed can appeal, won't get pardon, DNAIndia, 7 May 2015; available at: http://www.dnaindia.com/world/report-maldives-minister-says-jailed-ex-president-mohamed-nasheed-can-appeal-won-t-get-pardon-2083970

40. Editorial: What we saw and heard on May Day, Minivan News, 3 May 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/editorial-what-we-saw-and-heard-on-may-day-97608#sthash.LPZAjs1U.dpbs

41. Adhaalath party president denies terrorism charges in court, Minivan news, 3 June 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/adhaalath-party-president-denies-terrorism-charges-in-court-99108#sthash.WlkLaS38.DQKpGR7z.dpuf

42. Ibid

43. Nazim sentenced to 11 years in prison, Haveeru Online, 27 March 2015; available at: http://www.haveeru.com.mv/exminister_nazim_arrest/59865

44. 'Nazim's trial is akin to a satirical comedy' says Adam Azim, Haveeru Online, 19 March 2015; available at: http://www.haveeru.com.mv/exminister_nazim_arrest/59757

45. No one safe in this country: Ex Defense Minister, Haveeru Online, 20 January 2015; available at: http://www.haveeru.com.mv/news/58574

46. Islamic State: The Maldives - a recruiting paradise for jihadists, The Independent, 14 September 2014, available at http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/islamic-state-the-maldives--a-recruiting-paradise-for-jihadists-9731574.html

47. Paradise jihadis: Maldives sees surge in young Muslims leaving for Syria, The Guardian, 26 February 2015, available at http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/feb/26/paradise-jihadis-maldives-islamic-extremism-syria

48. Opposition leaders welcome president’s call for talks, Minivan News, 14 May 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/opposition-leaders-welcome-presidents-call-for-talks-98148#sthash.oUk5kGAh.dpuf

49. Maldives president calls for talks amid opposition criticism, Global Times, 15 May 2015; available at: http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/921878.shtml

50. Opposition leaders welcome president’s call for talks, Minivan News, 14 May 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/opposition-leaders-welcome-presidents-call-for-talks-98148#sthash.oUk5kGAh.dpuf

51. Maldives President sets rules for talks, refuses to release predecessor, Xinhua, 19 May 2015; available at: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2015-05/19/c_134252492.htm

52. Government rejects ex-president as MDP representative in talks, Minivan News, 25 May 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/government-rejects-ex-president-as-mdp-representative-in-talks-98692#sthash.RmNShGFc.dpuf

53. Crisis in Maldives: Can talks succeed?, Minivan News, 31 May 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/crisis-in-maldives-can-talks-succeed-98865#sthash.BtcTRlDo.dpbs

54. Government rejects ex-president as MDP representative in talks, Minivan News, 25 May 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/government-rejects-ex-president-as-mdp-representative-in-talks-98692#sthash.RmNShGFc.dpuf

55. MDP proposes radical roadmap for political reconciliation, Minivan News, 2 June 2015, available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/mdp-proposes-radical-roadmap-for-political-reconciliation-99058#sthash.arOg59tx.dpuf

56. Adhaalath party president denies terrorism charges in court, Minivan news, 3 June 2015; available at: http://minivannews.com/politics/adhaalath-party-president-denies-terrorism-charges-in-court-99108#sthash.WlkLaS38.DQKpGR7z.dpuf