“Thursday night, two weeks ago, was the last time anyone saw Ahmed Rizwan Abdulla, 28-year-old journalist, blogger, human rights advocate and all-round great person,” writes Azra Naseem. “A lot—yet nothing—has happened since Rizwan was reported missing to the Maldives Police Service on 13 August.”
An Maldivian Democratic Party statement today accused the president of being “irresponsible” in his reply to the question, and criticised him for failing to publicly express concern over the disappearance, now believed to have been an abduction.
Speaking at the ‘Workshop on Migration Processes and Policies in the Maldives’ held yesterday, Minister of Foreign Affairs Dunya Maumoon emphasised the importance of addressing the gaps in the law regarding foreign workers.
A joint economic council is to be formed between China and Maldives, Yameen revealed, after which a feasibility study would be conducted ahead of a Chinese contractor commencing construction of a bridge connecting the capital Malé and Hulhumalé.
Riyaz Rasheed suggested that land disputes are hindering development, while MPs of the opposition Maldivian Democratic Party and the Jumhooree Party responded by accusing the government of attempting to “destroy” decentralisation.
Speaking at a press conference at noon, Home Minister Umar Naseer said a team of 40 police officers and MNDF officials are involved in the “top priority case.” He confirmed reports of an abduction on Hulhumalé on the night of Rilwan’s disappearance, but said police have not yet established a connection.
The United Nations Commissioner of Human Rights called for an end to intimidation of the media in the Maldives while threats apparently referring to Minivan News’ journalist Ahmed Rilwan were received by one journalists and one MP.
While conceding that there was “a problem with presentation” concerning the falsely attributed quote, Sun Online Editor Ahmed ‘Hiriga’ Zahir said the Irish Times article was “written based on an interview Nasheed gave to the paper more than the paper’s editorial opinion”.
“Malé has become a jail in broad daylight, full of fear. Now since the threats started being sent, the first person, a journalist, has been abducted,” said MDP MP Ibrahim Shareef during a parliamentary debate today.