The Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) has urged the Maldives to drop charges against the executive director of the Maldivian Democracy Network, Shahindha Ismail.
The NGO chief is being investigated over a tweet she posted in response to a speech by President Abdulla Yameen. The tweet was followed by sensational news articles, statements from the Islamic ministry and death threats against her.
In a statement FORUM-ASIA said it was seriously concerned over death threats and online intimidation against the human rights activist.
John Samuel, the executive director of FORUM-ASIA, described online threats and intimidation as “part of a planned attack against dissidents” and an effort to stifle freedom of expression and human rights advocacy in the country.
“The trends, as observed in the Maldives, are clearly the efforts to silence critics and human-rights defenders,” he added.
The group urged Maldivian authorities to take prompt action against the online threats and drop charges against Ismail.