ACHR condemns 10 years
imprisonment of MDP activist Jeniffer Latheef
New Delhi: Asian
Centre for Human Rights condemned the sentencing of Jennifer Latheef,
a well-known pro-democracy activist and Human Rights Coordinator
of opposition Maldivian Democratic Party, to 10 years imprisonment
for alleged terrorism charges today at Maldives’ capital Male'.
She has been straight taken to the prison from the court.
Ms Jennifer Latheef, daughter of MDP spokesperson, Mr Mohammed
Latheef, had been charged with terrorism for violence against the
police during the civil unrest in Male' in September 2003. Her trial
ended in July 2004. Yesterday,
the police hunted for Ms Latheef across Male’ to deliver the summon
to appear before
the court for the verdict. Earlier on 13 October 2005, she was unable
to attend due to illness.
Thousands of people participated
in the demonstrations in September 2003 and there is no evidence
to suggest that Ms Latheef was involved in any violent activity.
politically motivated sentencing by Kangaroo courts of President
Maumoon Abdul Gayoom reflects personal vendetta against the opposition
leaders and the mis-use of the anti-terrorism laws. President Gayoom’s
much-vaunted reforms are mere hogwash.” – Stated Mr Suhas
Chakma, Director of Asian Center for Human Rights.
The sentence of 10 years imprisonment on Jennifer
Latheef for unproven charges of violent activities is harsh by any
yardstick; and her arrest and detention following the sentence is
a case of arbitrary arrest and detention. The Asian Centre for Human
Rights stated that it would seek the intervention of the United
Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention.