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MDP calls for probe into custodial deaths



The Maldives’ main opposition party has called for an immediate international investigation into custodial deaths after an inmate died while being treated at hospital.

Abdulla Rasheed, who was serving a five-year sentence on assault charges, passed away on Monday at the Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital. It is the seventh custodial death in two years.

“The MDP calls for an immediate, impartial, and expert investigation into the death of Abdulla Rasheed. The State has a legal and international obligation to investigate all custodial deaths, and to ensure that the right to life, the right to be free from torture or other ill treatment or other human rights have not been violated,” it said.

Abdulla Rasheed was arrested at a May Day rally in 2015.

While the Maldives Correctional Service said he had been reported ill Monday and hospitalised that same day in the capital, sources said he had been sick with severe diarrhoea and vomiting since three days prior.

The MDP noted the failure of the Maldives Human Rights Commission to investigate any of the cases.

When questioned about the increasing number of custodial deaths, Maldives Correctional Services spokesman Ahmed Lugman said “everyone dies. It must not be presumed that it is due to negligence on the part of MCS”.