Maldives Police Service, on Friday, revealed that authorities arrested an immigrant suspected of sexually assaulting a woman that visited a pharmacy in capital Male’.
According to police, the foreign male, aged 50, was remanded for 10 days at a facility determined by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
Police received reports of a customer being sexually assaulted in a Male’ pharmacy on Thursday night.
Although no further details were revealed about the case, police assured that an investigation is underway.
Public ire continues to soar over the government's meagre record of arresting and convicting perpetrators of sexual offences despite several promises to support the rights of children and women.
Protesters demanding justice for rape and sexual assault victims held demonstrations last month in front of Ministry of Gender, Family and Social Services as well as the roads of capital Male', following an upsurge of reported cases and alleged misconduct of police during investigations. Participants of #JaagaEhNei protest rallied against impunity and selective justice while Voice of Children (VOC)’s organisers called for police reform.
Recently, a collective of gender equality advocates originating from Family Legal Clinic (FLC), Nufoshey and Uthema Maldives also launched the #FundOurSafety initiative, voicing demands to declare rape and sexual offences as serious criminal offences and reallocate state funds for the protection of victims.
Meanwhile, the police have warned over increasing incidents of child abuse and exploitation, urging parents and guardians to be aware and report any such cases to the police's Family and Child Protection Wing at +960 3000600 or the Ministry of Gender, Family and Social Services at 1412.