“So horrific that it’s hard to believe”: Amnesty International launches petition to overturn “disgraceful” flogging sentence

Amnesty International has launched a petition calling on the Maldivian government to overturn a court ruling sentencing a 15 year-old rape victim to 100 lashes for an unrelated fornication offence.

The story of the girl from Feydhoo in Shaviyani Atoll, who was convicted of premarital sex in the Juvenile Court February 26 and sentenced to 100 lashes and eight months of house arrest, has been reported by media around the world and been widely condemned by international NGOs and embassies.

“It’s so horrific that it’s hard to believe it’s true: a 15 year old rape survivor has been sentenced to 100 lashes for ‘fornication’ in the Maldives,” stated Amnesty International, which has followed the case since January.

“The traumatised girl was allegedly sexually abused by her step-father for many years. He has since been charged with sexually assaulting a minor. During the investigation however, authorities came across evidence to support separate charges of fornication against the girl for pre-marital sex,” Amnesty stated, demanding the government overturn the “disgraceful” sentence.

The Maldivian government – which is currently vying for re-election to the UN Human Rights Council, launched its campaign in Geneva on February 28 on a platform of “women and children’s rights and the rights of persons with disability” – expressed “deep concern” at the decision to prosecute the girl.

“Though the flogging will be deferred until the girl turns 18, the government believes she is the victim of sexual abuse and should be treated as such by the state and the society and therefore, her rights should be fully protected,” said the President’s Office in a statement.

“The government is of the view that the case merits appeal. The girl is under state care and the government will facilitate and supervise her appeal of the case, via the girl’s lawyer, to ensure that justice is done and her rights are protected,” the statement added.

Amnesty International welcomed the government’s stated commitment, but noted that “at this stage she is still facing flogging. We need to keep the pressure up to remove flogging as a form of punishment in her case and all cases in the Maldives.”

Foreign Minister Dr Abdul Samad Abdulla meanwhile announced on state broadcaster Television Maldives (TVM) that the girl had post traumatic stress disorder and certain medical issues, according to local media.

“The girl was abused since she was 12 until she turned 15, so multiple times for three years. She was abused by her stepfather. She has said that her baby was murdered. You can imagine the mental status of a child in this situation. She suffers from this condition,” local media reported Dr Samad as saying.

According to Sun Online, Dr Samad said the international community was not fully informed about the reason for the girl’s sentence, which was not due to her abuse by her stepfather, but her confessed fornication with another man.

He also warned that a failure to unite as a country during times of such international criticism would provide opportunities for “groups that want to harm the country,” Sun reported.

The government’s denouncement of the sentence is meanwhile at odds with its endorsement by the Adaathath Party, members of which make up the majority of the Ministry of Islamic Affairs.

“The purpose of penalties like these in Islamic Sharia is to maintain order in society and to save it from sinful acts. It is not at all an act of violence. We must turn a deaf ear to the international organisations which are calling to abolish these penalties, labeling them degrading and inhumane acts or torture,” the party said in a statement.

“Furthermore, Allah has decreed that expressing disapproval of issues such as this contradicts with faith in Islam,” the statement continued, quoting verses from the Quran.

“Allah has also commanded that we show no kindness when implementing these penalties,” the party added.

Flogging and politics

UN Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay in an address to the Maldivian parliament in November 2011 urged the government to issue a moratorium on sentencing women to flogging for extra-marital sex.

“This practice constitutes one of the most inhumane and degrading forms of violence against women, and should have no place in the legal framework of a democratic country,” Pillay stated.

Her comments were condemned by religious groups in the Maldives, with protesters urging authorities to arrest the UN High Commissioner and gathering outside the United Nations carrying signboards with slogans such as “Islam is not a toy,” “Ban UN” and “Flog Pillay”.

A presidential state apology for allowing Pillay to speak to parliament was one of the five demands of the December 23 coalition [of 2011], a mass gathering in the capital Male’ that saw the fractured opposition unite against President Nasheed on the pretext of protecting Islam.

Following the fall of Nasheed’s government on February 7 2012, government-aligned Progressive Party of the Maldives (PPM) MP Abdul Azeez Jamal Abu Bakr withdrew the Pillay apology petition in parliament.

Amnesty International’s petition:


39 thoughts on ““So horrific that it’s hard to believe”: Amnesty International launches petition to overturn “disgraceful” flogging sentence”

  1. This amnesty is Fili Nasheed friend. They try to bring other religion in to Maldives. OUr religion is islam and Fili Nasheed and his friends have no right to say against it. The girl said she did commit crime, so she is punished ok? Why amnesty try to bring other religion to Maldives. they try to destroy islam and make us drink alcohol. We are 100% muslims and so we do things islam way ok?

  2. Name and shame the judge! the social worker! the lawyers and everyone else responsible for passing this sentence of flogging on this child.

    Support #OperationEndherima

  3. @kuribee
    You are a shame for the human race.
    We are all human and deserve to be treated as human.
    Nobody in Amnesty Int would ever discriminate against any religion be it Islam Hinduism Christianity Budhism,...
    This is not a political issue, not a religious issue, it is a court judgement where the judge has made a poor assessment of the case and has made a very controversial decision to punish a victim of domestic violence.
    Amnesty is only asking for justice and protection of a child abused and condemned unjustly.
    If your child or relative was in that position what would you say?

  4. Adhaalath idiots must be flogged in the face till their flesh rots, I hate them with every part of my being..

  5. @kuribee, crime? being raped is a crime?
    Do you have female family members? Would you let your daughter be physically tortured after being forcefully brutalized by sexual abuse? Youre a turd, and hope you get wiped off the concrete. And if the type of people representing islam is you.. God help us then

  6. @kuribee

    human rights is not a religion. nobody except you is trying to a bring religion into this.

  7. @kuribee
    I can't see what Amnesty International has to do with alcohol or religion.
    I "kuribee" thinks that God is intolerant of the fatherless he has not read The Holy Koran!


    Dear President,

    I am writing to you as supporter of Amnesty International, the non governmental organization which since 1961 has been working in defense of human rights, wherever they are violated.

    A 15-year-old survivor of rape has been found guilty of “fornication” or sex outside marriage by a juvenile court in the Maldives. She has been sentenced to eight months’ house arrest and 100 lashes.

    I urge you to
    - release the girl immediately and unconditionally, including ending the house arrest, and ensure that she is not flogged or otherwise punished;
    - ensure that the judicial process is initiated in order to overturn the conviction for “fornication”;
    - ensure that she has access to adequate and appropriate protective and support services;
    - end the practice of flogging as a form of punishment and act to amend Maldivian law to remove the provisions that allow flogging, as well as those that criminalise “fornication”.


    tina coppola

  9. Hmmm, now the ranting starts!!!
    Aren't the govt, Islamic ministry trying to solve this problem and definitely they will come to a good conclusion on this case as this is very different from other flogging cases!and presumably Adhaalath will consider the conditions this child was in and do away with the punishment!Indeed Allah is most merciful, oft forgiving like in his ism!! Actually all of this probing is good.

    And Minivan is really trying to discredit and defame Islam (Yawn!!) while all of us know why there is flogging and death penalty in the Sharia law!!And the flogging is not to kill(unlike some drone attacks or missiles from America and Israel) but to discipline a person and it should be moderate with the clothes on.

    What we see now is stealing, drug abuse,raping.Extra marital affairs which lead to divorce which then leads to problematic children ultimately destroying the whole generation.And every day more and more criminals walk beside us(which the courts give only a light sentence for their crimes against humanity like crushing a head and the lot).

    And by the way wasn't this case referred to the govt before in Nasheeds regime.Why didn't they try to solve this case before and give consideration into freeing her from the step father??!!i guess Amnesty International was sleeping like they always do when it comes to muslims being massacred and drone bombed!!??

  10. And here is another case that the all so great Amnesty international should probe in!!

    U.N. Lambasted for Denying Compensation to Haiti’s Cholera Victims -

    See more at: http://www.ipsnews.net/2013/02/u-n-lambasted-for-denying-compensation-to-haitis-cholera-victims/#sthash.NHkS98pZ.dpuf

    What about this one
    In recent years, the Palestinian Authority has tried to have its accusations of Israeli war crimes investigated by the International Criminal Court, only to see its request go nowhere because the Palestinian territories were not recognized as a state!!??

    Denied of statehood by the world and denied of justice because the world did not want to recognize them as human beings, where was Amnesty international??? and it's retarded humane personnel!!??

  11. I dunno about the girl but we will bludgeon the step-father in custody to pieces, while in custody. new policy

    his organ will b missin okies.

  12. @Kurimbee

    You accuse everyone of politising matters.

    What are you doing now? Playing the religion card.

    Everything in the maldives has turned into s*** because of our pathetic legal system. The legacy of 30 year rule by Gayoom: what a joke that he thnks we still need him? Gayoom failed us and those who worked with him failed us.

    We all know why Legal Reform did not happen in the last three years because Gayooms representatives in Parliament blocked reform. So Gayoom and his family and his Mafia that ran the country for 30 years would be protected in our courts.

    Who cared if we the people live in fear, gangsters rapists and murderers roam free and our children abused and flogged

    This case has finally pulled the mask off a nation riddled with hypocricy, corruption and violence and men and women in corridors of power puffed with super egos and nothing else.

    Maldives: a failed state

  13. Amnesty is Kedi Abudhu,s Friend,Abdulla Maumoon Abdulla Gayoom.Minus Abdulla it means Kedhi Abudhu.
    Gayoom Bug Kuribee.

  14. I wish amnesty will take more efforts to condemn american drone attack victims. Using drones they bomb whole houses full of people. sure there might be one or two terrorist but bombing a full house with people inside and next moment claiming they cannot speak about specific 'events' in the operation. For Amnestsy these kinds of things does not matter. Maybe its becuause of the colour. We are coloured people. They are white people. So the white people are good people,they can do no wrong.

  15. The neanderthals commenting as kuribee, shimy and human beings will tell you a lot about the average Maldivian person's intellect. See how they try to use red herrings and don't really address anything important, but use a lot of discriminatory, misogynistic and xenophobic rhetoric? This can be explained by years and years of inbreeding between cousins. They are incapable of rational thought....or thinking in general. So dear readers, please ignore the neanderthals.

    On topic though, what Amnesty doesn't realize is that the number of Maldivians actually trying to fight for the girl's rights are a minority. The country generally prefers superstition over rationality, and therefore are incapable of differentiating between right and wrong without looking at a 1400 year old book. So going by that, do you really think the majority of Maldivians would even want to do anything about this girl? Just go to haveeru news or a social media platform, and you will see them asking the authorities to flog the girl. Women's and children's rights are a joke in the Maldives. You can get away with pedophilia and rape easily if you're a man. Just read another recent minivan article written by lubna for some statistics.

  16. Koba Kaulhaa Waheed! mikoa tha jeheynei Navi Pillai ei ekkedah vaahaka dhakkaah...Adhaalath meehun tha lebal koffiya Laa Dheenee kohakah, dhen lalalaa

  17. @Kuribee you shame our religion and country. Flogging this girl would be highly unIslamic as Islam calls for justice and this act would be the gravest injustice we could do to a girl who has gone through so much. Get your head out of the sand and try to think and do us all a favour and shut up.

  18. Where was this amnesty when Muslims were killed in day light in Cambodia last year? Budhist had so many muslim women and children and international community was blind and no one open their eyes or raise any concern.

    Even as we speak , there are children in Guantanamobae jail in cuba, victims of from Afghanistan war.

    Like Kuribee said, this girl had flogged and sentence to get flogged when she reaches 18 years.

    The Man who had sex with her were flogged and sentence to much harsh condition.

    Since it was consensual sex, Girl was sentence to get fogged but only to execute it after she reaching 18 years.

  19. @Hussain
    The worst of arguments! Others are as evil as we are, therefore we as Muslims have the right to go against the teachings of The Holy Koran and flog fatherless children..
    Where is UNICEF ?? the protector of children and the former employer of the present president?
    And Hussein, as you should know Amnesty deals with persons who have been wronged in Cambodia, Cuba, Afghanistan -
    and the Maldives.

  20. why no one speak here about the man ? The man is already flogged and was put in Jail?

    I am sure this is politicized and this is about Islam and nothing more.

  21. @hussain, sexual abuse is never consensual, and agreed to it? WTF, its a scared little girl, ofcourse she will agree to it, and shed be psychologically damaged as well,

  22. Check the link below people.. and ask amnesty y don't they give a shit about this! this is not horrific to them.


  23. Interesting to see if the Govt will be able to stand and do what Amnesty is asking to do...or will it bury its head in the sand!

  24. Ann. This is exactly what I am saying ? Amnesty had given a blind eyes on this case.

    Amnesty had and other international community never raised any concerned until 2 months passed the incidence . That even was taken very lightly and issues statement condemning the incident and that was it .

  25. What amazes me constantly is the way some Maldivians attack the messenger of bad news. Let’s just look at this issue dispassionately and work out what is going on.

    Firstly, Amnesty International does not discriminate on the grounds of race, gender or religion. For the sake of brevity I won’t try and give endless examples to support this point. I am sure even the least intelligent of us can find this information with a bit of time on the internet. No brains or advanced skills are required to do this. And let’s be real! Amnesty International is not going to give up on a case just because some parochial and ethnocentric Maldivians have decided that they want to keep the rest of the world away from what goes on in this country. Time to get used to it boys and girls. This is a global world and the (fishing) village is almost a thing of the past. So, whether some of us like it or not, Amnesty International is going to participate in this debate. And good luck to them!

    Secondly, why is it that some of us cannot stop blaming Minivan News for highlighting contentious issues? For heaven’s sake! That is what makes a good newspaper. The Fourth Estate developed, against all odds, to protect the freedoms of the people and to safe-guard their rights. That is not to say that everything is balanced and fair in the world of journalism. But despite that, I would rather live in a world where the right to publicly express opinions are available for ordinary people. Time to grow up and learn to discuss the issues rather than attack the source, don’t you think? If some people find the editorial perspective of Minivan News too liberal, they are, after all, free to read or publish more conservative view points.
    Thirdly, and most importantly, this issue, as far as I can see, is about a young girl who is going to be punished for a second time. It is almost impossible for many of us to understand the psychological trauma that rape causes and the lasting effects on the victim. It is not about sex; it is always about power or the lack of it. When you are raped, especially as a young child, you rarely grow up to like yourself but you blame yourself constantly. It changes your perception of life: your ability to trust, to love, to feel at peace within yourself or even to form a lasting relationship. This girl has already lost her childhood and perhaps the rest of her life.
    I know I am going to be attacked by some of you. But unlike this victim, I am a big girl and there aren’t many things you can say that will upset me. So ask yourself if this girl is getting justice. She is not. We are brought up to recite constantly ‘Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate”. Do we mean it? Do we believe it? If so, this child deserves our mercy and our compassion.
    Thank you Amnesty International and Minivan News for dealing with this issue.

  26. @Hussain
    Seems to be in a state of total denial trying to blame all others. Give your opinion in accordance with your concience as a Muslim and a Maldivian, instead of jumping around from Cambodia, to Cuba to Afghanistan, then blaming Amnesty for only reacting after having gathered all information needed on the case. Or are you to scared and weak to have an opinion on your own?

  27. @Wives and concubines,

    Ahahhhaahh!really, a neanderthal??!!i thought that was what you believed in??!!

    Evolving from apes,fashioning from dinosaur egg heads, accidental mutations which in turn brings the desire to breed with the same sex(unfortunately which the gays and lesbos cannot do, wonder why!!?) No wonder the epidemic called HIV and aids came from them!

    I thought the royal family of great Britain inbred within themselves for a while but i guess they are not neanderthals! Ehh!!

    "After Henry VIII died in mid 16th century, every royal consort was 1st, 2nd, or 3rd cousins to the sovereign. Henry's daughter married her first cousin once removed, Phillip II of Spain in 1554. The first marriage to a more distant relation was in 1923 when the future George VI married his 13th cousin (the future Queen Mother). But her daughter (the present day Queen Elizabeth) married her 2nd cousin once removed. Charles intended to marry his 2nd cousin,

    Diana is Charles's 7th cousin once removed, and Camilla is his 11th cousin. Camilla is actually closer related to her stepson Prince William."

    Now you will say all of this is made up and the september 11 attacks weren't an inside job although the experts says so!!??

    And i thought you supported abortion (by a previous reference)which only shows how neanderthalic(oops) you really are ??!!

    Now why would a person so bold and rational and humane support abortion!!?and call us inbred when you know nothing about us(shows how humane you are!!??)

    BTW, why are you even referring to us as we are neanderthals!!?? couldn't let go of our comment ehhh!!??tsk tsk!

  28. @Hussein

    Where did you get the information about the man being flogged? I have not read about it anywhere in the media.

    Can you tell us since you are so informed what other punishment did this man get?

  29. I think Kurimbee and Shimy have replaced Modi. Have noticed Modi is not writing any more. Same writing style. Same obsession with President Nasheed.

  30. @Isse,

    I have no obsession with former pres Nasheed. In fact you won't even believe me when i say that i supported him in the first democratic election!!but all of that changed when the lying and hypocrisy began!the corruption began!

    All politicians are screwed and they never live up to most of the public's expectations!And you people will never believe that he is the biggest liar even when he lies to your faces!you'll just go on clapping and cheering for his greatness!!

    @ Angagatha Mithuru on Sun, 3rd Mar 2013 6:51 PM

    And am not against Amnesty International or foreigners but i am very much against all the hatred the west brews up against Islam!!??And like any other religion Islam also does have bad Muslims and extremists but talking about Islam without knowing the religion only spurs more hate(within the unbelievers) and extremism(within the extremists)and doubt??!!

    Just like this article where it does not mention the penalty given to men for rape and abuse!As our courts are so lame they can't find the men who did this but does that mean Sharia law is at fault!Firstly why did the men have the guts to do that??!!because the country is lawless! anybody can do anything and get away with it!!??we need to better our court systems and we know that it cannot be as advanced as the US or the lot!!We just don't have the money!!

    What my question is why Islam is blamed for degrading women when the west pushes on prostitution, extra marital affairs and gay relationships when it only destroys the very being of the women who then as single mothers has to rely on the govt? what if the govt abandons them like in Australia???!!

    Single Mothers In Australia Turning To Prostitution To Pay Bills

    Read more: Single Mothers In Australia Turning To Prostitution To Pay Bills | Medindia http://www.medindia.net/news/single-mothers-in-australia-turning-to-prostitution-to-pay-bills-113149-1.htm#ixzz2MZJGtSjf

  31. @ Shimy
    What my question is why Islam is blamed for degrading women when the west pushes on prostitution, extra marital affairs and gay relationships when it only destroys the very being of the women who then as single mothers has to rely on the govt? what if the govt abandons them like in Australia???!!

    So there's no prostitution, adultery or gays in Maldives? HA HA HA! I assure you the West doesn't hold a monopoly on these acts.

    And here's the big question for all of you blaming the West for everything, why don't you kick us all out of your country? You can all go back to living perfect lives with no sin that way. Just tell all the tourists and foreign workers to leave, problem solved! You can't take the cash and lifestyle from the West and still be good Muslims. Time to make a choice and stick to it.

  32. @Uh Dho

    Who's saying that Muslims are angels??!!And Maldivians are free of sin?

    I am not speaking for muslims but Islam and believe me, minivan and it's articles are always biased towards it just like any other western media.They bring half of a story and leave the other part for guess work!while on the other side these so called developed countries pollute the air endangering our small islands,kill innocent people in the name of justice by drones and missiles and push their women to prostitution slavery! but then again they say they are champions of humanity!!

    and one day you will realize that money isn't everything??!!

  33. Dear Shimy,

    while i dont disagree with u re the colour of Minivan news politically, u shd also mention in ur post, that ALL newspaper are somehow coloured in one or the other direction-is it religion or politics, I do not know a single newspaper which is not pro sth ...

    You also pointed out that they only bring half the story- if you know more then write it. Write it in a blog, write it down here, but dont blame them for writing half of it...

    Furthermore to ur prostitution slavery- I believe NO country would ever push women into prostitution so writing that down as a general thing is very naff...

    And one day sadly we will realise money is not everything HOWEVER other countries have used it for better purpose then a corrupt one.

  34. Shimy,
    if money isn't everything, then why did your country sell its soul to infidels? Your entire economy is based on selling foreigners (infidels) a beach vacation with bikinis and alcohol. Is it really that easy to claim you don't care about money while riding around on a motorbike, typing on a computer and talking on a mobile phone? Because I guarantee you wouldn't have any of those things without the tourism based economy. So put up or shut up! Kick us all out and go back to fishing and having sex with your 14 year old daughters.
    As for pollution, Maldives is also doing a fine job along with the western countries. You burn diesel for electricity and have absolutely no waste management capabilities.
    And yes, you were implying that there are more problems with western culture and the treatment of women. The problem with Sharia is that women are not treated as equals to men. That's why Sharia is disliked by the west. You punish women but not men for the same crimes. If you don't like what we have to say, stop making money from western tourists and stop taking international aid money. You can't have it both ways. But most of you Maldivians do, pretend to be faithful Muslims Sun-Thur, then it's off to Sri Lanka for booze and sex on the weekend. But again, if you think having sex with children is ok, then have at it. Nobody seems to care in Maldives anyway.

  35. And no matter how biased an article is, sex with a child is still rape. FACT

  36. @Uh Dho,

    You are right on Maldivian Muslims and it goes for the Muslims of the world! we are too dependent on the west that they have made us slaves directly or indirectly!God must have abandoned us because we believed in humans more than God and we got too lazy and corrupt to identify our problem!!(i suppose you don't give a damn about god but that's different for me, because if there is no god then i would have to believe in a stupid biased corrupt humanbeing which we all are in someways)

    And my comment does not say that this isn't rape but the way they are displaying sharia law is not correct, and that goes for some of the old sheiks in Adhaalath??!!


Comments are closed.