President vows to file criminal charges over Afrasheem murder allegations

President Abdulla Yameen has vowed to file criminal charges against an opposition leader who had implicated the president in the 2012 murder of MP Afrasheem Ali.

Several defectors from the ruling coalition, including Adhaalath Party president Sheikh Imran Abdulla, have said that the president and the tourism minister Ahmed Adeeb know the truth behind the brutal murder.

“I am being accused falsely. This government will penalise them. I want to file charges against those who are making these accusations. Not that of defamation, but criminal charges. I will file charges against Sheikh Imran,” President Yameen said at a ceremony to open a domestic airport at Raa Atoll Ifuru.

Afrasheem, an MP for the Progressive Party of the Maldives (PPM) representing Ungoofaaru constituency in Raa Atoll and also a moderate religious scholar, was stabbed to death outside his home on the night of October 1, 2012.

Police had said the killing was politically motivated.

President Yameen said the government will build an Islamic Centre on Ungoofaaru in Afrasheem’s memory.

Hussain Humam, the chief suspect in the murder and the only person convicted of the crime so far, has alleged the president and the tourism minister’s involvement in the killing.

At the first hearing of his appeal at the High Court in April, Human, who was sentenced to death in January 2014, said the pair “will know best” the details of the crime.

Sheikh Imran, at a mass anti-government protest on May 1 said: “Humam said the truth. President Yameen and Adeeb know best those who murdered Afrasheem.”

The home minister, Umar Naseer, was the first to link Afrasheem’s murder with President Yameen.

Speaking at a public rally after he lost the PPM’s 2013 presidential primaries, Naseer accused Yameen of having illicit connections with gangs, the drug trade and said he had witnessed a visit to Yameen at the PPM’s office by a suspect who was arrested and questioned by the police over the MP’s murder.

He retracted the allegations when he joined the cabinet.

The Maldives decriminalised defamation in 2009. The parliament then set the maximum penalty for civil lawsuits against slander at MVR5,000 (US$325).

The Prosecutor General Muhthaz Muhsin last week said his office is looking into what sort of criminal charges could be filed over the allegations against the president and the tourism minister.

Several politicians, including ex-PPM MP Ahmed Mahloof and ex-police chief Abdulla Riyaz, revived claims of links between Afrasheem’s murderers and President Yameen after joining a campaign against government authoritarianism.

The police in early May questioned Abdulla Riyaz over comments he had made over Afrasheem’s murder on opposition-aligned Raajje TV. The now-opposition MP had said he will reveal information of the murder “when the time comes.”

The president’s half-brother, former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, sued a newspaper editor in 2011 for re-publishing a New York Times article on misuse of state funds revealed in a 2008 audit report.

He lost the case, but successfully sued the late historian Ahmed Shafeeq over claims that 111 people had been killed in police custody during Gayoom’s 30-year reign.

Imprisoned ex-president Mohamed Nasheed has recently said he will sue four judges of the Criminal Court over claims made regarding his terrorism trial, in which he was sentenced to 13 years in jail.


No forensic evidence against Nazim, says legal team

Police do not have forensic evidence to support possession of dangerous weapons charges against former Defense Minister Colonel (retired) Mohamed Nazim, his legal team has claimed.

Maumoon Hameed told media last night (February 15) that the police were unable to provide any forensic evidence at Nazim’s remand hearing, despite both Nazim and his family having previously provided fingerprints and DNA samples.

“In 2013, the police spoke to the media and said that they are capable of processing 600 fingerprints per hour. What is taking them so long to process Nazim, his wife, two kids’ and their maid’s fingerprint samples?” asked Hameed.

After his arrest on February 10, Nazim was given 15 days of remand detention by the Criminal Court. Police had raided the apartment on January 18, later claiming to have found a pistol, three bullets, and an improvised explosive device.

Additionally, a pen drive was said to have been found containing evidence of an attempt to harm senior government officials, in what the police have said was a plan to overthrow the government.

Posters have since appeared around Malé City with the slogan ‘Free Nazim Now’, while several prominent politicians as well as Amnesty International have expressed concern over his sudden arrest.

“The day before yesterday the defense minister was hailed and deemed trustworthy,” said Maldivian Democratic Party Chairperson Ali Waheed speaking at a protest last week. “Now he is in a jail cell accused of crimes of a magnitude never seen before in Maldives”.

Nazim’s legal team said last night that the High Court has accepted two appeal cases filed by the legal team – one appealing Nazim’s arrest, with the second case appealing Criminal Court’s remand sentence.

The team has also announced that a defamation case had been submitted against the Commissioner of Police Hussain Waheed for telling the press on January 29 that an explosive device was found during the raid.

The High Court appeal hearing is scheduled for 1.45pm today (February 16).

The legal team had previously claimed that the items found at Nazim’s house were planted by the Police, saying that officers spent 10 minutes inside Nazim’s bedroom unsupervised before the search began. Police have called the claims “untrue” and “baseless”.

Hameed also informed the media last night that the police had not responded to requests to share evidence against Nazim in order to allow the preparation of his defense, or for the items allegedly confiscated from his house to be investigated by an independent commission.

Also speaking at yesterday’s press conference, former Police Commissioner and member of Nazim’s defence Abdulla Riyaz reiterated his belief that some officers are following unlawful orders from politicians.

“I am saying this as an individual who has served  at the institution for over 20 years, no police officers should act in an unjust manner towards any individual,” said Riyaz.

The former police commissioner also highlighted issues with the search, saying that the police had not followed due procedures – claims the police have also denied repeatedly

“When conducting high profile searches, the Police always films the search,” said Riyaz. “However we have not been provided with a video footage of the search as of yet.”

Additionally, Riyaz suggested that if the police had found an improvised explosive device at his home, the area should have been evacuated, and the Maldives National Defense Force (MNDF) and the fire and rescue services informed.

The MNDF yesterday said that it would begin providing security for Riyaz after an official request for protection last week.

“People are following me everywhere I go. I feel somewhat threatened. I have requested for security but MNDF are yet to grant me security,” Riyaz told Minivan News yesterday.

Related to this story

Former Defence Minister arrested on illegal weapons charge

Police accuse Nazim of plotting coup, planning to harm senior government officials

Pistol and explosive device found at Nazim’s home, says Police Commissioner

Police raid Defence Minister Nazim’s home in early hours


MNDF to provide security for former Police Commissioner Riyaz

The Maldives National Defence Force has said it will provide security for MP Abdulla Riyaz after the former police commissioner requested protection last week.

“People are following me everywhere I go. I feel somewhat threatened. I have requested for security but MNDF are yet to grant me security,” Riyaz told Minivan News.

MNDF Spokesman Major Adnan Mohamed said only that a request from Riyaz had been received and that the process of arranging the protection was ongoing.

The spokesman has also been quoted as saying that limited resources could delay provision of security to the Kinbidhoo constituency MP.

After serving as police commissioner between 2012 and 2013, Riyaz moved into politics, joining the then-government aligned Jumhooree Party (JP’s) before winning a seat in the Majlis last year.

Since the JP’s split from the government, and the arrest of former defence minister Mohamed Nazim, Riyaz has suggested the police are now being used to further political agendas – claims rejected by police as attempts to “deceive the public”.

His comments came after Nazim’s legal team suggested that dangerous weapons found in his home were planted by the police, who have since stated that the former minister had been plotting to overthrow the government.

Riyaz has also suggested that police are attempting to plant narcotics in his office, his home, or his car. He told Minivan News today that he had sent pictures of those following him to police.

Writing to the newly appointed Minister of Defence and National Security – Nazim’s replacement – Major General (retired) Moosa Ali Jaleel last week, Riyaz said he feared his life was in danger.

“I need security as I fear there might be an attempt on my life based on the political atmosphere set now,” he wrote.

Article 105 (b) of the Constitution requires the state security services to provide “protection and safety” to all members of the People’s Majlis.

Riyaz also sent a similar letter to Minister of Home Affairs Umar Naseer, asking if any person has been charged in the case of an MP’s motorcycle being set on fire, as well as an incident in which oil was thrown at him last December.

Security concerns in the country also caused the current Police Commissioner Hussein Waheed to take on additional personal security late last month.

Concerns for the security of MPs in October prompted the MNDF to warn Majlis members to stay in their homes after dark, saying that personal security would be made available to any MP who requested it, though the protection was withdrawn soon after.

This move had followed a significant number of threats made against MPs last year, with the Inter Parliamentary Union saying the government’s reaction would be a test of its democratic credentials.

Attacks on elected officials have become more common in recent years, most notably the brutal murder of Progressive Party of Maldives MP Dr Afrasheem Ali in October 2012.

In February last year, MDP MP Alhan Fahmy was nearly paralysed after being stabbed in the back in a busy restaurant in the capital Malé.

Related to this story

Police deny framing Nazim as former Commissioner alleges politicisation

MPs urged to stay in at night as MNDF offers personal security


Jumhooree Party ticket to include eight sitting MPs and retired police commisioner

The Jumhooree Party has selected nine parliamentary candidates for March’s elections, choosing eight sitting MPs as well as retired Commissioner of Police Abdulla Riyaz.

The ticket for Kimbidhoo constituency was given to Riyaz  as he signed for the party yesterday. Speaking at the Jumhooree Party’s (JP) ‘Kunooz’ headquarters, leader Gasim Ibrahim requested that the people of the constituency vote for Riyaz.

Gasim also endorsed former Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) MP Ahmed Sameer, who joined the party the previous day after being guaranteed the ticket for the Dhidhoo constituency he currently represents.

The party selections have received some negative responses from supported both insides and outside of the party.

Along with Sameer, the JP has awarded tickets to eight sitting MPs, inclusing: JP leaderánd Maamigili MP Gasim Ibrahim, Mathiveri MP Hussein Mohamed, Hithadhoo South MP Hassan Latheef, Maradhoo MP Hassan Adil, Naifaru MP Ahmed Mohamed, Gemanafushi MP Ilham Ahmed, and Kanditheem MP Mohamed Hussein.

Sitting JP MP s Shifag Mufeed and Hoarafushi MP Ahmed Rasheed have decided not to run for re-election.


The JP’s selection policy has caused consternation within the ranks, however, with JP council member Fuad Gasim – also the state minister for health and gender – expressing disapproval of the party selection policy.

Fuad said that awarding tickets to members who just recently joined the party would limit the opportunities for party loyalists. Of greatest concern to Fuad was the selection of Sameer, though he stated additional reasons for grievance.

“I believe a lot of people worked very hard for the country, democracy, and the party during the recent presidential elections. Even if they are MP s I cannot accept them – not being part of that work and now coming to us for tickets when the government changed,” Fuad was quoted as saying.

JP  Deputy Leader and spokes person Dr Hussein Rasheed denied the party ticket was awarded to anyone.

“People are saying a lot things to create divisions in the party and the coalition. But none of that is true.” said Dr Hussein.

The nine candidates in question were reviewed by the special committee created for the purpose by the council, and since they received more than 51% marks they do not have to compete in a primary, he added.

“For the remaining 19 seats, we will be holding a primary if we have to, and today is the deadline for applying to these seats.”

The Minister of Islamic Affairs Mohamed Shaheem of the Adhaalath Party– who campaigned for the JP during presidential elections – has  also expressed disapproval of the selection.

“Every one were in the MDP are getting the coalition ticket from JP. Where is [the] fairness [in this]? They won’t be loyal to this government,” Shaheem was quoted as saying.

After Adhaalath was excluded from the governing coalition’s Majlis negotiations to assign seats to coalition parties, the JP offered to share  up to 3 seats from their allocation of 28 slots. The JP has said that slots will be shared only with conditions, such as not competing with the JP in other constituencies.

Local media has today reported Adhaalath’s leaders to be displeased with the offer of three seats, reportedly rejecting the offer. Gasim told Sun Online that Adhaalath had requested five slots, though he maintained that the original offer remained on the table.

Celebrity candidates

JP candidate Riyaz was appointed as Commissioner of Police immediately after the controversial power transfer of 7 February 2012. Riyaz – not a police officer at the time – was seen carrying President Mohamed Nasheed’s resignation letter to the speaker of the People’s Majlis without any official authorisation.

The opposition MDP has often accused Riyaz of involvement in planning the police mutiny and the alleged ‘coup d’etat’ of 7 February. His appointment was questioned, and the Police Integrity Commission found that he had violated the Police Act by campaigning against President Nasheed whilst commissioner.

As all parties prepare for the People’s Majlis elections scheduled for 22 March, a number of high profile candidates have emerged from outside of the political sphere. Local celebrities have shown an interest in contesting – among them famous sportsmen, media personalities,actors, and directors .

Sports personalities showing such an interest includes President of Volleyball Association of Maldives (VAM) Mohamed Riyaz, volleyball coach Ibrahim Rasheed (Satho), and former national football team players Ali Umar, Ahmed Thoriq (Tom), Ashraf Lutfee (Sampath), and Mohamed Sinan (Naanee).

Media personalities considering running include Television Maldives’s presenter and journalist Aishath Leeza, Raajje TV news head Ibrahim ‘Aswad’ Waheed, Dhitv presenter Mohamed Ameeth, and presenter Aminath Namza.

From the film industry, director and Vice Chair of Maldives Film Association Fathmath Nahula, actor and city council member Lufshan Shakeeb (Looppe), and actorsMuhamed Abdulla (Muhamma) and Ali Shameel.

All of the above, the exception of Aswad (MDP), will represent pro-government parties should they choose to run.


PIC reluctant to cast doubt on election annulment, says Elections Commission

The Police Integrity Commission (PIC) has refused to investigate the confidential police forensic report – based on which the Supreme Court annulled the first round of the 2013 presidential election – because it could cast doubt on the legitimacy of the ruling, the Elections Commission has said.

Speaking at the People’s Majlis Commitee on Independent Institutions, EC member Mohamed Farooq said that the commission noticed serious issues in the Maldives Police Service (MPS) forensic report. According to Farooq, the EC found that many among the people who were considered deceased based on the forensic report were actually alive.

When the EC requested for the court’s permission to include those people in the eligible voters list, the court responded saying it did not declare anyone dead and the annulment of first round of elections was based on the police forensic report, Farooq said.

“Then we realised that it was more of a issue with the forensic report than the Supreme Court. And since it was prepared by the police, we submitted a complaint to the Police Integrity Commission, because they produced such a faulty report,” Farooq was quoted as saying in CNM.

Fraudulent allegations

According to Farooq, the PIC responded to the complaint saying that if a decision is made on the forensic report it could raise questions about the legitimacy of that case, and therefore the commission will not decide on the matter nor will they investigate the case further.

In the first round of elections former President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) came first with 45.45 percent. President Abdulla Yameen of the Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) came second with 25.35 percent, and the Jumhooree Party’s Qasim Ibrahim came third with 24.07 percent of the vote.

Qasim subsequently filed a case at the apex court citing fraud and vote rigging in the election. On October 7, the  Maldives Supreme Court annulled the first round.

The 4:3 verdict cited a confidential police report submitted to the court alleging 5,600 ineligible votes. It was said to be compiled by a team of MPS ‘forensic experts’ who worked inside the Supreme Court premises collecting and analysing evidence of the alleged vote rigging.

Later, when the People’s Majlis ‘241’ security services oversight committee requested for the report, then Commissioner of Police Abdulla Riyaz declined. The parliament have still not officially received the report, however a copy of the document was obtained and published by Minivan News.

Report’s impact could be huge: MP Sameer

The report was later shared with the EC, who will now review it and submit a report to the People’s Majlis Committee on Independent Institutions.

Speaking to Minivan News today, the committee chair MP Ahmed Sameer said the  group would review the EC report and take necessary action.

“The impact of this report is huge. If there is something wrong with the report we will have to look into it. It shall be discussed in the Majlis,” Sameer said.

The three dissenting judges in the Supreme Court case, Chief Justice Ahmed Faiz, Justice Abdulla Areef and Justice Muthasim Adnan in their dissenting opinion dismissed the confidential police report submitted by the Attorney General Azima Shakoor as invalid evidence as EC was not provided a right of response to the document.

The majority decision of court based on the secret police report cited 5,623 ineligible votes, while Faiz and Areef, after a comparison between the EC’s list of those who voted and the Jumhooree Party’s seven lists alleged of dead, underage, and repeated voters found only 473 cases (0.2 percent of votes) of irregular votes.

The two judges also stated that election laws do not allow for annulling the entire election in instances of fraud, and all three dissenting judges challenged the apex court’s constitutional jurisdiction over the case.

The confidential police report was also dismissed by the United Nations after an expert review of the document. “We feel confident in asserting that the election was all inclusive, there was no disenfranchisement and the quality of the voter register met international standards,” read a statement from UN Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Oscar Fernandez-Taranco following his visit to the Maldives stated

Other local and international election observers, among them Commonwealth and Indian observers, also praised the conduct of elections, considering it free and fair.

Some people claimed to be underage in the secret police report were later found to be of voting age at the time, and some declared deceased in the report found to be alive.


Minister of Home Affairs orders the removal of “any material inciting hatred towards police”

Minister of Home Affairs Umar Naseer stated on Monday night that he had granted an order to police to remove any material which could be interpreted as “inciting hatred towards police”.

“I have notified every police officer and police station in the country of this order. I have ordered the removal of any material that may incite hatred towards the police – whether it is text, a drawing, a poster or a billboard – that is found in any area of the Maldives at any time.”

The Home Minister’s announcement was made during an event held in honour of retired Commissioner of Police Abdulla Riyaz, who has left the services to pursue a political career.

“For a long time now, there have been attempts of different levels to ruin the reputation of the police force and to create hatred amongst the public for this institution. This is something that has been done in other countries too. But the thing is, peace and stability have never been established in such countries,” Umar said.

Umar pledged to make the police force an institution which is loved and respected by all citizens.

Calling on educated youth to join the police forces, the Home Minister said that it is through employing young, capable, educated persons that the police force can be further strengthened and developed.

The Home Minister further pledged to “destroy gateways through which drugs are brought into the country”, as well as to eradicate all such networks.

The biggest problem faced by the Maldivian society is the issue of drug abuse, he suggested, stating that he had already begun to take necessary measures to eradicate such networks in the near future.

He promised that the police would play a huge role in the operation, and opined that it would be near impossible to bring down other crime levels without first handling the issue of illicit drug sale and abuse.

“We are coming out on a war against the issue of drugs. I hope we will get your full cooperation in these efforts. We will completely destroy drug trade networks,” he told the gathered officers.

Newly appointed Commissioner of Police Hussain Waheed, meanwhile, advised the police to speak “gently and caringly” when addressing citizens, and to maintain equal treatment to everyone.

He then said that police should become an entity which rids the community of the currently spreading “hatred and discord”, and that is should aim to bring back unity amongst the people.

“Aim to enforce law, not gaining popularity”: VP Jameel tells police

During the same event last night, Vice President Dr Mohamed Jameel Ahmed stated that the police’s primary objective should be to ensure that they impartially enforce law, rather than whether or not they are garnering support and popularity.

Jameel stated that there are complaints that some of the police stationed in atolls work differently from the norms, saying that this leads to public disapproval and gives rise to concerns. He said that there should be no discrimination in the enforcement of law.

“Those who are mandated to enforce the law must not question the fundamentals of the law itself. Police must not question the substance of a law. It is not the police who decides whether or not the substance of a given law is solid. The law is already passed, and the police’s duty is only to enforce it,” Jameel said.

“If the citizens are being disturbed due to a loud speaker, you must be able to stop the loud speaker. If citizens are getting harassed on the street in a manner that disturbs them, and there is a law banning such action, you should be able to stop it. If there are laws made to assist the people, the police must be able to enforce it. I hope you will work in that manner,” he stated.

Jameel said that, although at a low level, it had previously come to his notice that police officers had acted on their own accord in certain cases, despite actions to be taken being specifically stated in law. He said that such actions had inhibited the growth and development of the institution.

He added that it was only when crime rates go down and stability is maintained that the police can be considered as having fulfilled their mandate to its fullest. He further called on the police to help the government implement a social protection system, saying that one of the strongest pleas of the public is to remove the political polarisation and to establish unity and oneness among the people.


Police Commissioner Riyaz praises conduct of elections: “We have tear gas and rubber bullets but did not have to use them”

Commissioner of Police Abdulla Riyaz held a press conference late on Saturday night declaring that he was ready to accept whatever post that President-elect Abdulla Yameen offers him.

Speaking at a press conference, the commissioner commended the police force for their “exemplary performance” in ensuring that elections proceeded smoothly.

“It was one of the operational priorities of the police for 2013 to ensure that a peaceful election is held. I extend heartfelt thanks to the police team for achieving this. As a rule, we stopped giving leave to police from July 1st and they have been working towards this objective under the leadership of Assistant Commissioner Saudhee since then,” Riyaz stated.

“Tonight is a very joyous night, certainly it is for me. One reason why this is so is because I have been able to lead the MPS to achieve this as the most senior uniformed officer. I would like to thank President Mohamed Waheed for having entrusted me with these responsibilities and having appointed me to this post.”

Riyaz also thanked the public for their part in ensuring smooth elections.

“We received an overwhelming amount of public support. It is something that I have always reiterated that the majority of citizens are law abiding and peace loving persons, and they have proved that today.”

“I would also like to thank both the contesting parties; their senior leaders as well as general supporters.”

“I would like to congratulate, on behalf of MPS and myself personally, the President Elect Honourable Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom. Also, although he has failed, MDP candidate, too, as they also did do some very hard work,” Riyaz continued.

“Police play one of the most important parts in the development of a country. I assure citizens that the police executive team are qualified, capable, and with the mindset to achieve this.”

Abdulla Riyaz further extended thanks to the Elections Commission team, stating “It’s been a long time since the work to hold elections began. It has been delayed multiple times for various reasons. With the will of Allah, we have finally been able to conclude elections today.”

Asked by a journalist if he believed he should hand in his resignation following the election of a new president, Riyaz replied that “the President has the mandate to appoint or remove a Commissioner. I don’t believe that a commissioner needs to resign just because the government has changed. If the President Elect does want to remove me from this post as Commissioner, that is his decision to make.”

“What is important is serving the country, not the post I am in. Isn’t it too early to discuss or decide what I ought to do about my post? In any case, I was mentally prepared to being removed had the government changed differently from how it has,” he responded.

“Whatever education I have was gained with citizens’ money. So I believe I should serve the public for as long as possible. I don’t think I should comment on what my priorities will be if I remain in my post, or else it might appear as though I am too eager to hold onto this position.”

“What I do know is that a large amount of police officers want me to remain in this post. But I shall have to reconsider it a bit more. It is a job with very many responsibilities after all. I am 44 years old, going on 45, so I am wondering if it is time I took on a more relaxing job. I have been serving in uniform for 25 years now. Let’s just say that I am willing to serve the nation in whichever position that the President Elect offers me,” the commissioner continued.

“Operation Blue Wave is a huge success, as we planned way ahead from way before. We did not even have to use pepper spray. I am absolutely certain that the past two years were a time when we used minimum amounts of force,” Riyaz stated.

“This does not mean that we do not have operational tactical materials. We have tear gas and rubber bullets and all but we did not use any of it. Maldivians have shown that they no longer really support street protesting and other acts of the sort. There is no one that the arm of the law cannot touch. This is what I have been showing the public in these past two years,” he concluded.


Police Commissioner was appointed legally, says integrity commission

The Police Integrity Commission (PIC) has stated that Commissioner of Police Abdulla Riyaz was appointed to the position in compliance with the Police Act, and that his appointment was lawful.

In a statement issued today, the police said that the PIC had sent a document informing them about this conclusion and stating that the PIC had decided Riyaz was appointed in compliance with Police Act 2008/5 article 52(a) and 52(b).

Police said that President Dr Waheed Hassan had appointed Riyaz on Feburay 8, 2012. Before Dr Waheed appointed him as the commissioner, the Home Minister Mohamed Ahmed Jameel had appointed him as Assistant Police Commissioner  on the same day.

According to media reports the PIC investigated the case after some politicians expressed doubts over  the legitimacy of Riyaz’s position.

On August 20, Riyaz posted a letter he claimed to have been sent, urging the police to “say no” to former President Mohamed Nasheed on September 7, just as they had on February 7 – an event the author described as a “jihad”.

The letter, addressed to the entire police force, praised officers for their “patience” in the face of Nasheed’s “cunning” and “malicious” actions during his presidency.

On August 24, the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) issued a statement stating that the ”MDP firmly believe that Riyaz, by choosing to tweet the image of this particular letter against a candidate running in the presidential elections has contravened the codes of conducts enshrined in the Police Act and the Presidential Elections Act.”

Riyaz was appointed commissioner immediately after Nasheed’s resignation, which Nasheed and MDP would later claim was a police coup. The party has also repeatedly questioned the legality of Riyaz’s role on February 7.

The allegations were later rejected by a Commonwealth-backed Commission of National Inquiry (CoNI) that ruled that there had been “no coup, no duress and no mutiny”, while also calling for action taken against unlawful acts committed by the country’s security forces following the transfer.

During the statement regarding Riyaz’s social media activity, the party again raised the issue of the police commissioner’s legitimacy.

”The MDP notes that this is unfortunately not the first instance where Mr Riyaz, appointed in dubious circumstances, has used his position in a blatantly politically manner,” the MDP statement read.

”The MDP would like to draw attention to Riyaz’s role in the February 7 2012 forceful overthrow of government, subsequent police brutality, impunity and lack of accountability, politically motivated detentions, unconstitutional barring of Raajje TV from police service events, the refusal to accept summons by parliamentary select committees and the extensive interview he recently gave on a policy which was alleged to be the MDP’s.”


Maldives police sign MOU with Turkish counterparts

Police Commissioner Abdulla Riyaz has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Turkish National Police during his official visit to Turkey.

Alongside Director General of the Turkish National Police, Mehmet Kiliclar, Riyaz signed the Security Cooperation Agreement in order to strengthen the institutional relationship between Turkey and the Maldives.

“The Security Cooperation Agreement will provide important training opportunities for officers of the Maldives Police Service in diverse areas including the combating of transnational organised crime, human trafficking and narcotics abuse and trafficking,” read a statement on the Maldives Police Service (MPS) website.

Writing from Ankara on his personal Twitter feed, Riyaz also mentioned a meeting with the Turkish International Academy against Drugs & Organised Crime, stating that the organisation has assured the MPS support and assistance.

The MPS delegation will be in Turkey until Saturday.