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Page added on February 8, 2010

Maldivian detainees repatriated from Pakistan

Maldivian detainees repatriated from Pakistan thumbnail

Four Maldivian nationals imprisoned by the Pakistani government for alleged militant activities have been repatriated to the Maldives and released to their families.

They join another five who were returned to the Maldives last week and also released. The government confirmed that one of the men had stood trial in the Maldives after being accused of involvement in the Sultan Park bombing, but noted that the case had been dropped.

The president’s press secretary Mohamed Zuhair said the Pakistani government had returned the men, who were picked up during a military raid on several armed groups, with no information on charges against them or conditions on their imprisonment, making them innocent under Maldivian law.

“Our information suggests there were originally 12 [Maldivians] but three died while they were being transported between facilities,” Zuhair said, adding that reports the men had been carrying firearms at the time of their arrest were conflicting.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmed Shaheed said the nine men had not been formally charged, and stressed that “the types of activities they are alleged to have been involved in, while illegal, do not necessarily fall under terrorism.”

Shaheed said the Maldives Police Service had determined that “the best thing to do was to release them to their families and put them under surveillance”, while their activities abroad were investigated. “There are a lot of stories about the nature of what they were doing. If we release anybody, it is because our laws require them to be released,” he said.

The home minister had travelled to Pakistan to investigate the matter, he said, emphasising that the role of foreign ministry was to “repatriate Maldivians when it is in the national interest to do so” and not “to mix that up with judgements of character”.

Shaheed noted that the Maldives does have an arrangement with Pakistan regarding prisoner exchange, particularly regarding the repatriation of Pakistani nationals currently serving time in the Maldives, but stressed that this arrangement “is unrelated to this case [of the nine Maldivians].”

He took exception to stories published today that the government was “releasing jihadists”, acknowledging that such allegations “will hurt the national brand upon which our economy depends.”

“People should not use the term jiahdist lightly,” he said. “To some it means people who mean harm, to others it means someone pious on the path to Heaven. People need to be careful what they are saying.”

Shaheed also expressed concern that the Maldives was last week described as a “safe haven” by Taliban-linked resistance fighters, who recently visited the Maldives to meet with members of the Afghan government.

“We are a soverign country and if we hear of a government [coming to the Maldives] to be involved in talks we expect them to tell us,” he said, suggesting that the country’s safety and reputation could be undermined by such “political gaming.”

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19 Comments on "Maldivian detainees repatriated from Pakistan"

  1. Salim Waheed on Mon, 8th Feb 2010 10:44 PM 

    A number of respected news agencies reported that these Maldivians were arrested while “heavily armed.”

    Heavily armed on the Afghan boarder = terrorist

    Even if they weren’t armed, it seems unlikely they were going to Afghanistan on a mission of peace or humanitarian AID.

    So now these people are let back into the Maldivian populous. To be adored by the growing number of radical conservatives. To preach their message of hate.

    If the investigation was not complete, why were they repatriated? Why did Shaheed allow us to take custody of dangerous criminals without the accompanying charges? How come he doesn’t have better answers for why Maldivians DIED in Pakistani custody?

    What is going on?

  2. Texas-Lad on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 5:26 AM 

    Another lie, another fabrication by spin doctor.

  3. Mini on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 9:52 AM 

    “the best thing to do was to release them to their families and put them under surveillance”

    Do u really expect us t believe that the police are going to keep them under surveillance? That is exactly what the government said when they wanted to release convicted criminals into the society. Now we see these fellows repeating the crimes and taking lives. We do not need this kind of benevolence Dr! This country is indeed a safe heaven for terrorists, criminals and expatriates living illegally.
    There is absolutely no rule of law here.

  4. meekaaku on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 10:24 AM 

    Salim,

    If heavily armed on the Afghan border = terrorist, then US and their allied troops are terrorists too. That makes the US government the biggest terrorist organization.

    If it is unlikely that they were on a mission of humanitarian aid, that makes them guilty of what?
    If the investigation is not complete, why are u labeling them as dangerous criminals? Whatever happened to the liberal values of innocent unless proven guilty? Or does it not apply to people you disagree? Maybe they could be criminals, but it would have to declared after a conviction in a court of law, no?

  5. Y A on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 10:50 AM 

    I’m all for “innocent until proven guilty”; but rescuing people who went to jihad (in another country, leaving their own wives & kids alone to fend for themselves) & turning them loose once again here is a splendid idea…soon America will be targeting us in the fight against terror. There are damning facts against these people that should be considered.

    Why did they go to an area where there’s fighting going on? These militants are fighting for their own personal gains & using the name of Islam to justify it to the world & brainwash people. I don’t know why these ‘wahhabbis’ in Maldives fail to see that the extremist doctrines that they been brainwashed are mostly from Shia & Sufi sects of Islam, not Sunni as we are supposed to be. Shia & Sufi, the sects that the majority of Pakistanis, afghanistanis, Iranis etc follow are very different from us Sunnis & we are taught to be peaceful & tolerant…not suicide bombers & terrorists.

  6. Ali on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 11:20 AM 

    is that really dr.shaheed speaking. Im shocked to hear him say all that. It not judgemental to say someone is a terrorist when some one is caught doing it….

  7. The Liberal on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 11:48 AM 

    Salim Waheed: Few days ago you wrote “innocent untill proven guilty” regarding the state misnister adil saleem on suspected alcohol.
    he had two girls (not related) with him in the early hours of morning & THREE alcohol bottles. but u didnt take those into consideration. however, the maldivians who werent charged with anything are terrorists bcoz they are in pakistan & have beards, huh?

    thats how liberal you are! thanks for showing ur true hypocrisy and hatred for islam

  8. The Liberal on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 11:52 AM 

    Salim:
    Respected News Agencies? You mean the corporate western media that is hell bent on disseminating false news abt islam?

    Isnt it CNN that showed a 10 year old footage after 9//11 twin attacks, showing palestinians celebrating another incident. they showed as if the palestinians are celebrating the 9/11 attack although it was a 10 years old footage. that is ur respectable news agencies.

    we really dont need ppl like u throwing ur radical secular ideologies into our throat.

  9. Fracture on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 12:03 PM 

    When the arrests of these 12 men were made in Warzistan last year they were immediately labelled as TERRORISTS. There was no need for any investigation at all. Sufficient was it that these men are Muslims, with beards & near Afghanistan. There was no need to look into the matter at all. All news agencies of the world reported similarly.

    Now we are hearing that they were no charged with anything. Could these people be just carrying these guns to protect them from the warlords? Or could it be that the reports that there were armed are fabricated or false to tarnish the image of Maldives? These are all questions.

    Its sad to see people who advocate for liberal democracy label them as terrorists although they have not been convicted. Is this because the freedom & liberalism applies only to people they like? Isn’t that hypocrisy? I wonder what’s the difference between these pseudo-liberals & the radicals they call? I hardly think there is.

  10. Salim Waheed on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 12:59 PM 

    MeeKaaku,

    As far as I am concerned, violent Jihad is against Islamic values and principles. But not everyone see’s Islam the way I do. But yes, I believe these people are terrorists because they (themselves) assert that they were going on violent “Jihad.”

    But don’t confuse the situation with the phrase “innocent until proven guilty.” This case was about them being repatriated by the Maldivian Government without the necessary materials. Without due diligence being done by the Foreign Ministry to inquire into the deaths of these Jihadists. When they were arrested, of course they should have had proper cases brought against them. And i’m sure cases were made by the Pakistani government, but where is all that documentation? Where is all that information? This is my point.

    The difference between Jihadists and proper military forces (whether they are Afghan, US, or Pakistani) is that there are rules of conduct and accountability for military regulars. Militia, gorilla fighters, and terrorists have no such accountability. No such rules of conduct. And are not backed by legitimate authorities. That is why they are called terrorists.

    I am against American occupation in Iraq and in Afghanistan. However, they started the job, and now they need to finish it. If they left, both countries will be destroyed by internal struggle. And in the case of Afghanistan, there is no question in my mind that it is better off now than it was before.

    10 Million children have been put in school. Women are allowed in the public sphere. Human rights are respected. And even though it has become one of the leading heroin exporters, this is only because it is not yet a democracy. It is not yet a stable country. But Liberty. Liberty is worth the cost. Freedom is worth the cost. A future for those who remain is worth the cost.

    Now that we finally have a future in our country, I am not willing to give it up. Are you?

  11. jenny on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 2:46 PM 

    So easily said…that from the 12, 3 died while being transported between facilities… Does the president’s press secretary not realize that he is talking about 3 Maldivians who died while in custody of the Pakistani govt?
    Whoever they were…extrajudicial killings are NOT permissible…it is wrong. And Dr Shaheed and the rest should know better than to be so casual about such things.

  12. Texas-Lad on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 3:22 PM 

    Jenny, Extrajudicial killing NOT permissible? we are talking about Pakistan, where Honor Killing is permissible

  13. meekaaku on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 4:36 PM 

    Salim,

    Who is the torch bearer of Islamic values and principles? I myself don’t consider the war in Afghan a holy war, but I consider it their liberty to go if they choose to. What other choice do we have? Put all conservatives under surveillance?

    You say:
    “The difference between Jihadists and proper military forces (whether they are Afghan, US, or Pakistani) is that there are rules of conduct and accountability for military regulars. Militia, gorilla fighters, and terrorists have no such accountability”

    As if the US has been quite responsible for the “enemy combatants” in Guantanamo Bay. Torture, i mean coercive interrogation techniques, no access to lawyer, jailing without charges etc etc. Is this the behavior of responsible military regulars?

    Liberty and freedom are worth fighting, but should it come at the expense of innocent lives? and what about the liberty of jihadists to go on jihad in the first place?

  14. Fracture on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 4:42 PM 

    Jihad is an integral part of Islam. When the need arises its an obligation upon Muslims to participate in Jihad (Qital). However, in these situations Muslims are commanded not to kill civilians, destroy cattle, farm lands and religious places of all faiths. The Americans have no right what-so-ever to invade Afghanistan or Iraq. It is also worth to note that their war is against the UN mandates & resolutions.

    Since they are invaders they should be resisted. The US forces are killing thousands & thousands of civilians blaming these deaths as unfortunate incidents or co-lateral damages. The buildings have been bombed. People are not an iota safer than pre-War. They have caused more harm & damage to the people of Iraq & Afghanistan.

    The Muslims must fight against these invaders. Its Jihad. Muslims are Muslims wherever they are. Its a duty of Muslims to help their fellow brethren when they are being oppressed by the Kuffars & their puppet governments in the Islamic world.

  15. jenny on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 8:22 PM 

    Texas-Lad…Honor killings and other “legalized” forms of barbaric traditions and unjust interpretations of the Holy Quran is not the same as extra judicial killings. Even in Pakistan extra judicial killings are against their laws. But even if it was legal in Pakistan, it does not mean our govt should ignore the deaths.

    Three people supposedly died while being transferred from facility to facility. Whether it is done by the US, Irag, Pakistan etc…such extra judicial killings are things that need to be addressed, investigated and stopped.
    Three Maldivians were killed. Whether they were “terrorists” or not remains unanswered. But even if they were charged and convicted for terrorism,…even then they cannot be killed outside the boundaries of the law.
    i am very concerned about so many Maldivians being arrested in Pakistan & Afganistan. For multiple reasons. The main reason being the most obvious one…fanaticism. We have already seen it’s colors on our soil…in the form of a bomb. Thankfully it did not kill anyone…but it was a warning call.

    From the 12, nine were reunited with their families. Were they really arrested with fire arms? With a terrorist organization? Shouldn’t they have to go to some evaluation and stabilizing sessions or something… their way of thinking doesn’t just go away… if they were truly arrested fighting together with a terrorist organization…then they believe suicide bombing and killing the “infidels” is a completely justifiable thing. This kind of thinking doesn’t just go away just becuz they were released from Pakistani jails.

    Or what if, these 12 really had nothing to do with any terrorist organization, but were arrested cos they dressed like Wahabi’s or their interpretation of the Quran was more conservative…or they were in the wrong place at the wrong time… and the story about them being armed at the time of the arrest cud be a justification of arrest by the authorities. Not the first time something like that would have happened. President’s press secretary does say the reports of them carrying firearms are conflicting.

    The story is a tad bit unclear…with a lot of lose ends… and our govt should find out how 3 people died while being “transferred”???

  16. g on Tue, 9th Feb 2010 9:02 PM 

    i want to know the exact details of this raid on maldivians in pakistan. how did the three die? and their names?

    what were they doing with armed groups in pakistan? and the names of the armed groups?

    do they belong to or have links with algaeda,taliban,dot,lasker e toiba,
    sultan park bomb group,salaf?

    do they have any links with sultan park bombber? any links with himandhoo?

    cut the crap doc. we know that you are a liar mdp or no mdp..

  17. Mini on Wed, 10th Feb 2010 8:12 AM 

    @Fracture: It is true that invaders should be resisted and jihad should be invaded against them. However, don’t we have other obligations we should take into consideration before taking that path? They leave their children and wives to fend for themselves on their own. What about their rights?
    And these days with what we hear on news it is really questionable whether what they are doing is jihad when innocent people are killed. For me, those who bomb buses and public buildings are not mujahids but cowards.

  18. Muad MZ on Wed, 10th Feb 2010 9:53 AM 

    I see that some in our society are really scared of America. Scared of being targeted or even be close to being targeted. Hence all they say seem to be generated from them simply being scared. However we do not find any of them coming out and openly saying it. Others are more fearful of the Creator, hence fears no person when speaking of the truth.

    In regards to Human rights, yes people are able to study a bit more then before in Afghanistan, but ten to a hundred times more have been killed at the same time by Nato forces. Two wrongs does not justify anything. Hence I see this argument as weak.

    Second, the Heroin trade was nearly non-existence when the Taliban was in power because they forbade the production of Heroin and punished severely anyone which did not follow the law. Just in case some smart liberal tries to deny this, I will give a western source for it:
    http://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2009/08/us_supported_af.html

    Now even the CIA admits that Taliban is involved only in just 2% of the drug trades while the majority is done by the US supported Afghan President’s brother Ahmed Wali Karzai – who has been reported by the New York Times as being paid by CIA and is responsible for the booming illegal opium trade.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/28/world/asia/28intel.html

    Even a pro democracy women rights news report shows how deep the US is involved in the Afghan drug trade:
    http://www.rawa.org/temp/runews/2008/10/15/how-deeply-is-the-u-s-involved-in-the-afghan-drug-tradeo.html

    I do not know how liberal minds miss news on liberal news papers. Maybe it was an honest mistake. Allah (swt) knows best.

    It would be nice knowing how Maldivians died in the hands of Pakistan soldiers. Or maybe I can give you a hint from this video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acvzSFn_ZHU

    You can make up your own mind on what happened to the Maldivians at the hands of Western backed government of Pakistan.

  19. Muad MZ on Wed, 10th Feb 2010 5:40 PM 

    I thought the liberals who claim America does not torture and they represent Human Rights while Taliban in Afghanistan is the terrorists may would like to read this new article on evidence held by the UK Government on US government torture case, released in the UK today due to court order forcing the British gov to do so.

    Ofcourse they try to argue that for national security purposes these details should not be released. But the appeal court forced the pro-torture government of UK to show their true face. If you try to say Im labeling UK government, let me reply beforehand and say if they were not Pro-torture, they would not try to hide and protect their good friend and long term ally America.

    I tried to stress the word Government above since everything done was by the Government and its official security forces. Hence the country which that government rules should be accountable even if anyone would like to bring international law into account. Yet the UN is paralyzed when it comes to punishing the US or even passing a resolution condemning US Torture. Very interesting info for me atleast.

    http://english.aljazeera.net/news/europe/2010/02/2010210103524312763.html


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