The Republic of Maldives is a nation made up of 26 coral atolls and 1,192 individual islands. The report marks exactly three months since the country’s Supreme Court ordered the release of scores of arrested opposition politicians and activists. Over the last two months, the authorities have repressed all forms of dissent including violently breaking up peaceful demonstrations, arbitrarily arresting and detaining protesters, attacking journalists and threatening news organisations with closure.
During this crackdown, police have used unnecessary force to disperse peaceful demonstrations, in some case indiscriminately, using pepper spray and tear gas. At least a dozen journalists have been injured while covering protests, with reporters being arrested and ill-treated. The police also used unnecessary force to disperse peaceful demonstrations, in some case indiscriminately using pepper spray and tear gas.
Despite the hostile environment, human rights defenders and civil society organisations (CSOs) in the Maldives have bravely spoken out against these restrictions. CSOs have documented human rights violations and sought to expose them nationally and internationally. However, many Maldivians are seriously concerned that repression will prevent elections, due to be held later this year, from being free, fair and inclusive.
Click here for further details and full report.