Statement by the SOS-Torture Asia Litigators Group on the dissolution of the Maldivian Democracy Network

Global, 19 December 2019 - Following the decision by the authoritiesto dissolve the Maldivian Democracy Network (MDN), now entered into force, the SOS-TortureAsia Litigators Group urges the Government of the Maldives to uphold the ruleof law and procedural due process in this matter. The group calls for areconsideration of said decision and appeals to President Ibrahim Mohamed Solihto protect the fundamental right to freedom of association and due process ofhis constituency.

The members of the group are deeplyalarmed that four human rights defenders are under criminal investigation inconnection with the decision to ban MDN. These sweeping actions by the Governmentundermine the rule of law in the Maldives, as they promote and legitimize baselessaccusations against MDN and human rights defenders that were initially made bypowerful vigilante groups.

We strongly support and promote the exerciseof administrative power that is bound strictly by the law, and the substantiveopportunity for individuals and organisations to respond and defend themselves againstany accusation without fear of retaliation or reprisals.

Thus, we strongly reiterate our call for thegovernment of the Maldives to observe due process and the right to freedom ofassociation, which are crucial in upholding the rule of law in the Maldives.

List of signatories (all are members of the Asia LitigatorsGroup)

Citizens Against Hate

Cross Cultural Foundation

Human Rights Organisation of Nepal (HURON)

Human Rights Alert Manipur

Human Rights Office Kandy

Justice Project Pakistan



Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates(PAHRA)

Kumarapperuma Arachige Upul Indika

“Spravedlivost" (Justice) Jalal-AbadHuman Rights Organization

Women in Struggle for Empowerment (WISE)

World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT).

Contact for the media:

Iolanda Jaquemet, OMCT

+41 79 539 41 06

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