Police accused of assaulting man arrested from Velidhoo on Tuesday

  • Police allegedly assaulted Hassan Ibrahim native to Velidhoo
  • He was released at around 03:45 a.m.
  • The man was arrested under allegations of calling President Yameen a 'thief' on social media

K. Male' | Zunana Zalif | 29-August-2018 | Wednesday 15:42 | zunana | Local | 712

Police obstruct opposition supporters in Noonu atoll Velidhoo before President Yameen's arrival -- Photo by: Raajjemv

Allegations have surfaced that officers of the Maldives Police Service (MPS) assaulted a man arrested in Noonu atoll Velidhoo island for calling President Abdulla Yameen a ‘thief’.

Hassan Ibrahim, 25, native to Velidhoo island was arrested on Tuesday night while he was standing by the harbor with a few opposition supporters who had gathered with banners before President Yameen’s arrival in the island.

Ibrahim, speaking to RaajjeMV after his release, stated that he was pepper-sprayed and dragged to the campaign site area by officers on Tuesday night and that they had left him there. At around 11:30 later that night, locals had found him in the region and tried to take him to the hospital, however, officers had arrived at the scene and taken him into police custody in the police vehicle.

After taking Ibrahim into police custody, officers had informed him that he was being arrested for calling President Yameen a ‘thief’ on social media platform Facebook, going on to say that he had publicized political statuses defaming the current administration, on his Facebook page.

Police had released Ibrahim at 03:45 a.m., having then taken him to the hospital to get medical tests done. He was released after giving him a warning, according to Ibrahim.

RaajjeMV was unable to attain a comment from MPS at the time of publishing.

Two more were arrested alongside Ibrahim under similar allegations, but they were released later in the night.

Speaking to RaajjeMV, main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP)’s campaign manager in Velidhoo, Ajvadh Hussain revealed that a group of opposition members had gathered by the harbor because President Yameen was scheduled to arrive in Velidhoo island on Tuesday night.

Moreover, he added that officers of the Maldives Police Service (MPS) had arrived where opposition supporters were gathered and begun to confiscate their banners and flags under a court order. Officers had even confiscated MDP flags put up in some of the houses before President Yameen’s arrival. Officers had also closed off some cafés and shops in the region before the President’s arrival.

President Yameen arrived in Velidhoo island on Tuesday night to mark the conclusion of some of the development projects in the island.

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