Police intelligence suggests that the spate of violent assaults in Malé during the past six days were gang reprisals “caused by a disturbance between two groups”, Chief Inspector Abdulla Satheeh said at a press briefing yesterday.
Three suspects were arrested in connection with two assaults and police are searching for two further suspects, he said.
All three suspects had prior criminal records, he added.
The cycle of violence began on Monday night (July 28) when an 18-year-old man was stabbed in the back in the Henveiru ward.
On the following night, two men were stabbed in Hulhumalé and a 23-year-old woman was stabbed in the back in Malé.
All five were hospitalised. Also on Tuesday night (July 29), a pedestrian was mugged and assaulted.
A 34-year-old was meanwhile stabbed to death on the island of Thulusdhoo in Kaafu atoll on Thursday night (July 31).
On the same night, a 22-year-old was stabbed in the neck in a narrow alley in the Manchangoalhi ward of Malé.
While a 19-year-old was knifed in the Henveiru Park on Friday night (August 1), a pair of 18-year-olds were stabbed on Saturday morning in the same area in broad daylight.
One of the victims – Mohamed Mazin, from Noonu Miladhoo – died while undergoing treatment at the Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH) on Saturday night (August 2).
Mazin was the 31st murder victim in the Maldives since 2007.
Chief Inspector Satheeh, head of the serious and organised crime department, said yesterday that no arrests had been made yet in connection with the murder.
Chief Inspector Ismail Naveen meanwhile told reporters that police have confiscated a number of weapons from areas in the capital where gangs congregate, including the Henveiru Park, the park on Alifkilegefaanu Magu, and the open area near the State Trading Organisation’s main office.