Rilwan’s disappearance report submitted to President

Missing journalist, Ahmed Rilwan Abdullah | Photo: Open Source

Malé, Maldives – The members of the Presidential Commission on Deaths and Disappearances presented to President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on Thursday the final report of their findings into the enforced disappearance of Ahmed Rilwan Abdulla. 

After submitting the report to the President, the commission member Farisha Abdullah told a press conference that the commission has questioned a large number of people and conducted forensic analysis of the material evidence obtained by the police through foreign parties.

Three people have already been charged in the case and others may be charged, the Presidential Commission said.

The accused are Ahmed Muaz, Ismail Abdul Raheem and Ahmed Ismail, who were all arrested last June. A break down of the charges against all three men as published by the Prosecutor General’s (PG) Office revealed the Ismail Abdul Raheem was charged with aiding and abetting in an act of terrorism on both counts. It was detailed that the charges were raised against him for assisting in stalking, kidnapping and murdering Rilwan in 2014, as well as assisting in stalking and murdering Yameen.

With regards to both counts of murder, Ahmed Ismail was charged with organising an act of terrorism. According to the PG Office statement, Rilwan and Yameen’s murders were both planned by Ismail and Rilwan’s murder was carried out as planned by Ismail and his counterparts.

The third accused, Ahmed Muaz, also has charges of organising an act of terrorism against him for his participation in organising the deaths of Rilwan and Yameen.

Rilwan, who was forcefully disappeared on 7th August 2014, was a journalist at Minivan News. According to the statement by Commission on Investigation of Murders and Enforced Disappearances of Maldives the DDCOM, which was comprised of former Attorney General and current Supreme Court Justice Husnu Suood as chair along with Abdulla Munaz, Adam Ibrahim, lawyer Fareesha Abdulla and journalist Misbah Abbas, on September 2019, Rilwan was murdered and then submerged into the ocean by individuals with ties to Al-Qaeda, after declaring him an apostate among them.

During his presidential campaign, President Solih said he would bring justice after a transparent investigation into the disappearance of Rilwan.