Maldives Police Service (MPS) has warned political parties and media organizations against promoting 'convicts'.
While the country's joint opposition launched its posters for September's polls, photos of all four opposition leaders were included as well.
In a statement released on Saturday, police accused political parties of using media organizations to 'promote convicts' in order to garner support, adding that 'such acts are unlawful'.
Further instructing all to refrain from committing such illegal acts, police said that those that continue to violate laws 'will be sought and penalized'.
Back in January, Maldives Correctional Service (MCS) warned to take legal action against those that cover statements by prisoners while in May the Maldives Broadcasting Commission (MBC)-that regulates all broadcasting stations in the country- threatened 'to penalize media organizations that broadcast interviews of covicts'.
All four opposition leaders- former Presidents Maumoon Abdul Gayoom and Mohamed Nasheed, Qasim Ibrahim and Sheikh Imran Abdulla- were imprisoned at one point during the current administration; one per year since 2015. Nasheed and Qasim are in exile while Gayoom and Imran are serving their sentences in Maafushi Prison.
While they were arrested and tried separately, both the local and international community believe that their criminal proceedings were based on political motivations and in violation of the Constitution and international laws.
Supreme Court's controversial ruling on 1st February also ordered Nasheed, Qasim and Abdulla's immediate release; Gayoom was free then but was arrested four days later, hours after incumbent President Abdulla Yameen declared a nationwide state of emergency.