MUO urges government to stop abusing the judiciary to stifle dissent and reiterates calls for the release of political prisoners

The Maldivian United Opposition (MUO) urges the Maldives government to stop abusing the judiciary to suppress dissent and reiterate calls for the release of all imprisoned on politically motivated charges.

The Maldives United Opposition deplores and condemns in the strongest terms the abject brutality of government directed authorities, through obvious collusion from sections of the judiciary, in holding in detention a mother of two and five young men for fourteen months, and the eventual sentences of 5 year prison terms for their participation in a peaceful political rally on 01 May 2015. The government’s undue influence over the judiciary was ostensible in that the detainees were denied the lowest sentence as first time offenders.

The Maldives United Opposition calls upon the Maldives judiciary, concerned institutions and authorities to overturn these injustices being meted out as apparent measures of a bigger agenda of intimidation, and call for the release all sentenced under politically motivated charges.

The government’s ongoing assault on human rights defenders and opposition politicians were made obvious when the Criminal Court violated regular procedure and sentenced the Maldivian United Opposition’s Spokesperson Ahmed Mahloof MP for a further six months in jail. The MUO also condemns the Court’s suspension of MP Mahloof’s lawyer. MP Mahloof had been the target of selective charges and continued persecution by this regime. His sentencing is an example of the judicial perpetuation of the Government’s policy of oppression.

The Maldives United Opposition (MUO) continues to condemn the government’s relentless assault, through the judiciary, to incriminate key opposition activists and leaders.

In a message conveyed through family members, MUO Spokesperson Ahmed Mahloof called upon well-wishers “to prevent the government’s serial abuse of the judiciary in negating basic rights, including the right to assembly and freedom of expression”.

The Maldives United Opposition appeals to all international well-wishers to prevail upon the government of Maldives, to stop abusing the judiciary for the unlawful purposes of stifling peaceful political dissent and calls for the reversal of injustices and freedom for all political prisoners.