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6 war widows request to return to Maldives

27 February 2019, MVT 13:01
Director General of National Counter-Terrorism Centre Brigadier General Zakariyya Mansoor (R) at a Press Conference held by Maldives National Defence Force. PHOTO: NISHAN ALI/ MIHAARU
27 February 2019, MVT 13:01

National Counter-terrorism Centre (NCTC) revealed that families of some Maldivian insurgents killed in foreign conflicts are currently requesting permission to return to the country.

In a news conference held in the Coast Guard building on February 20, Director General of NCTC Brigadier Zakariyya Mansoor disclosed that around six families had contacted the centre with requests to be retrieved from foreign countries.

“We are talking about families that are struggling alone, without any other options due to their husbands dying in war. Out of these families, six are making contact with us”, Zakariyya Mansoor said.

Speaking about difficulties the authorities faced in bringing families back home, Zakariyya noted that children born in foreign countries lacked proper identification documents. He stated that this would lead to complications in confirming the children's status as Maldivian citizens.

Despite the obstacles, Zakariyya declared that the families were a responsibility of the state, and called for authorities to work together to bring them back to Maldives. Additionally, he revealed that NCTC was working closely with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Maldives Immigration and Maldives Police Service to find a solution.

NCTC acquired information on 61 males, and some of their wives and children who left the country, to participate in extremist armed conflicts. The government had previously revealed that most of these Maldivians departed to Syria.

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