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Rilwan's abductors to be prosecuted next week: Pres Solih

Shahudha Mohamed
19 September 2019, MVT 19:50
President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih speaking at a press briefing held at President's Office. PHOTO: PRESIDENT'S OFFICE
Shahudha Mohamed
19 September 2019, MVT 19:50

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih declared on Thursday that Rilwan's case will be forwarded to Prosecutor General's (PG) Office next week to press charges against suspects involved.

The case is under investigation by the Presidential Commission on Investigation of Murders and Enforced Disappearances. Based on recent evidence uncovered by the commission, authorities now believe Rilwan was murdered following his abduction.

At a news briefing held at President's Office, President Solih quoted the commission and stated that notable progress has been made into Rilwan's investigation.

He highlighted that the special operation conducted by Maldives Police Service last week was in connection to the commission's investigation into the missing journalist's murder. A total of 17 residences and 11 persons were searched during the operation.

"The inspections were carried out to support the evidence collected so far", said the President, assuring that he intended to fulfil his promise to ensure justice for Rilwan.

During the police operation, Ahmed Agleel (Kid) was taken into custody in Addu. He was released later that night after authorities collected his statement and confiscated his mobile phone and laptop.

Per the commission's report, Agleel allegedly arranged the vessel aboard which Rilwan was murdered. However, he denied any involvement, claiming that the accusations against him were "baseless".

Following the report, authorities responded by withholding the passports of 15 individuals related to the case.

Speaking at Thursday's briefing, President Solih also announced updates into other probes by the commission.

According to the President, the report on the investigation into blogger Yameen Rasheed's murder was complete but was not yet publicised because of the ongoing court proceedings.

The report will be disclosed following the conclusion of court proceedings, he said.

The commission's report on Rilwan's investigation state that the journalist was murdered by affiliates of the militant multi-national extremist organization, al-Qaeda. Yameen's murder is also believed to be carried out by religious extremists.

Yameen, known to be close friends with Rilwan, was stabbed 35 times in the stairway of his apartment building on April 23, 2017.

President Solih further noted that the investigative report on Raudha Athif, a local model and medical student who allegedly committed suicide in Bangladesh, was completed as well.

Further, he confirmed that the probe into the murder of 25-year-old Mohamed Anas, who was attacked with a sharp object near Litus Service Centre in July 2017, was set to conclude soon. The report will be publicised shortly, he said.

Moreover, President Solih revealed that the commission is currently looking into four additional cases.

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