Foreign Minister Dr Ahmed Shaheed has said the ministry yesterday asked police to investigate the case of leaked documents concerning Guantanamo Bay detainees.
Dr Shaheed said the documents consisted of unofficial communications to the Maldives government from the US government, and a document sent to the Attorney General’s office by the Foreign Ministry.
Dr Shaheed said the documents included an unofficial letter sent from the US to discuss how a legal framework could be established to bring in the detainees.
”The documents were sent to Parliament’s National Security Committee by an MP,” Said Dr Shaheed. ”MP Ali Waheed was the person who first spoke about these documents.”
Dr Shaheed said that the person who leaked the documents and delivered them to MPs was responsible for the act.
”The Maldivian government has not officially agreed to bring in the detainees,” he said. ”It is just at an early stage and a group of people who do not properly understand the matter are worried and concerned.”
Independent MP Mohamed Nasheed said the government’s desire to investigate the case was “stupidity and weakness”, ”as there are more concerning issues than the leaked document.”
Nasheed claimed to have seen the documents, summarising the communication in his blog and identifying it as an official diplomatic document sent by the US government to the Maldivian government.
”The government cannot take action against the person who leaked the documents,” said Nasheed. ”There is a law allowing people to inform others if an unlawful activity was going on inside the area in which he or she works, and according to that law, no action can be taken against that person.”
Nasheed said the letter to the AG from Foreign Ministry revealed that the government has already agreed to bring the Guantanamo Bay detainees in the country, but legal advice was needed on the matter.
”That was an official agreement and they are just pretending to make it an ‘early stage negotiation’,” Nasheed said.
He added that the document from the US government consisted of a list of things it believed had been been agreed by the Maldives, and was requesting confirmation.
”One of the leaked document gives information that the former inmate’s communication will be under surveillance and they cannot leave the Maldives,” Nasheed said.
Press Secretary for the President Mohamed Zuhair said that the document was not leaked but was “deliberately stolen”.
Zuhair said anybody who stole the documents has causes “a lot of trouble” for the Maldives, by disrupting diplomatic relationships between countries.
”Now the US government may think that we deliberately leaked the document,” Zuhair said. ”The recipient should be aware that it is unlawful to have a leaked document of the government and should have clarified whether the document was the original before distributing it to everyone.”
Zuhair said the US government had approached the Maldives to handle two detainees from the Guantanamo Bay prison.
”One of them was a man born in the West Bank,” he said. ”We do not have the information on the other person yet,”
He said the Maldives would be receiving “numerous benefits” for accepting the two detainees from Guantanamo Bay prison.