DO compares Maafurhi to Abu Ghraib



9 January 2007 (updated on 3 Febuary 2007)

MDP Chairman attacks the US and the UK by innuendo
(updated 0n 31 January 2007)

It was reported in Minivan News on 30 January 2007 that "President Gayoom’s regime, which is now 28 years old, has used torture and repression as tools of government throughout its existence, and Anni exclaims that it has, “probably sent its ‘cookbook’ to Abu Ghraib prison!” Anni is the popular nickname of the MDP Chairman.

The heading of a Divehi language article in the UK-based web site Dhivehi Observer reads “Is K-Maafurhi prison turning into an Abu Ghraib?” The reference to Abu Ghraib sounded rather gratuitous and a deliberate swipe at the United States and Great Britain, the leading states involved in the war on Islamic terror in the Middle East and elsewhere.

The article went on to say that “since Maafurhi has been managed under the special supervision of the Iron Lady [a derogatory reference to the Maldive government’s deputy home affairs minister and presidential member of parliament, who is much vilified by the Maldive opposition movement] we are now witnessing scenes reminiscent of Abu Ghraib prison of Iraq or Guantanamo prison of Cuba”. Both these facilities hold dangerous terror suspects.

Maafurhi prisoners captured after a riot
(source: Dhivehi Observer)

Unlike the atrocious crimes against humanity perpetrated with impunity in detention facilities in Islamic countries, misconduct by military gaolers in American and British-run facilities are reported publicly and those responsible are court-martialled, convicted and severely punished.

Western military authorities do not authorise military personnel to have unconsenting sex with prisoners of war and their sale into slavery.

The Maldives and many Islamic countries are still governed under Islamic Shariah law based on the Koran and the codified precedents of Mohamed known as Hadith.

Hadith is still legally enforceable in the Maldives as part of the Shariah code. For example Hadith number 2150 in book 5, chapter 711 of Sunan Abu Dawud sets out how an American, British or other infidel (non-Muslim) prisoner of war could be treated in the Maldives. It states:

The woman Dhivehi Observer calls "Iron Lady" (source: Dhivehi Observer)

“Abu Sa'id al-Khudri said: The Apostle of Allah sent a military expedition to Awtas on the occasion of the battle of Hunain. They met their enemy and fought with them. They defeated them and took them captives. Some of the Companions of the Apostle of Allah were reluctant to have intercourse with the female captives in the presence of their husbands who were unbelievers. So Allah, the Exalted, sent down the Koranic verse: ‘And all married women (are forbidden) unto you save those (captives) whom your right hand possesses.’

This passage is in Koran, chapter 4 verse 24 and so the Hadith is clearly based on the authority of the Koran. Malakat aimaanuhum (those whom your right hand posseses) is a Koranic term that applies to non-Muslim female captives of war or slaves. Some Islamic soldiers in Mohamed's armies were reluctant to have sex with female captives but a Koranic passage was revealed categorically making this lawful. The soldiers' doubts were dispelled and they were given permission to have sexual intercourse with female captives even in front of their husbands. There is further evidence in Hadith that this practice was encouraged and approved of by Mohamed in spite of the fact that ordinary Muslims of the time continued to feel horrified by it.

Sahih Buhkari volume 5 Book 59, Hadith 637 reads:

“Narrated Buraida: The prophet sent Ali to Khalid to bring the Khumus [a fifth of the booty reserved for Mohamed] and I hated Ali, and Ali had taken a bath (after a sexual act with a slave girl from the Khumus). I said to Khalid, ‘don’t you see this (i.e. Ali)?’ When we reached the prophet I mentioned that to him. He said, ‘O Buraida! Do you hate Ali?’ I said, ‘Yes’. He said, ‘Do you hate him, for he deserves more than that from the Khumus.’”

Ali bin Abi Talib, to whom this Hadith refers, was Mohamed’s first cousin and son-in-law. He was the third head (Caliph) of Sunni Islam and first leader (Imam) of the Shiites. According to this Hadith, Ali took a female captive of war and had sex with her. When a horrified Muslim by the name of Buraida complained of this to Mohamed, rather than punishing Ali, he approved of it and said that Ali deserved even more. There is no evidence that the captive consented to sex with Ali. Modern Geneva conventions relating to the treatment of prisoners of war condemn such behaviour and in the United States, United Kingdom or any other civilised country there is a well-known legal term used for unconsenting sex and those who commit it are punished severely.

Army Specialist Megan Ambuhl. First person to be charged with abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib:

In spite of having acceded to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, there is no evidence that the Maldives has repealed the rulings in these Hadiths and Koranic passage by act of parliament. That means no Maldive court would ever convict Maldive military personnel who have unconsenting sex with a non-Muslim female captive taken in a conflict. Before drawing parallels with Abu Ghraib or Guantanamo Bay, Dhivehi Observer ought to investigate whether or not the Maldives has repealed these Shariah provisions or if its own political party, the opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) has a policy to repeal those provisions when it gains power.

Shariah provisions relating to the treatment of prisoners taken in non-military situations also need investigating.

Sahih Bukhari volume 7, book 71, Hadith 623 states:

“Narrated Anas bin Malik: Some people from the tribes of Ukl and Uraina came to Allah's Apostle and embraced Islam and said, ‘O Allah's Apostle! We are owners of livestock and have never been farmers,’ and they found the climate of Medina unsuitable for them. So Allah's Apostle ordered that they be given some camels and a shepherd, and ordered them to go out with those camels and drink their milk and urine. So they set out, but when they reached a place called Al-Harra, they reverted to disbelief after their conversion to Islam, killed the shepherd and drove away the camels. When this news reached the Prophet he sent in their pursuit (and they were caught and brought). The Prophet ordered that their eyes be branded with heated iron bars and their hands be cut off, and they were left at Al-Harra till they died in that state.”

Before commenting on the alleged bahaviour of the “Iron Lady” running Maldive prisons, Dhivehi Observer ought to investigate whether or not the treatment of criminals (they did kill a shepherd) exemplified in this particular Hadith has been repealed from the Maldive legal code as would be required under its commitment to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. Does the MDP have an explicit policy on repealing that provision once it comes to power?

Unless these Shariah provisions are explicitly and unambiguously repealed by act of the Maldive parliament, it is not fair to criticize iron ladies. They could simply be carrying out their sacred obligations under the Shariah. Following orders is, however, not admissible as a defence against a charge of ordering, aiding or abetting torture, under International Law.

Captain Adam Fusfaru. First person to be charged for murder at Maafurhi: Conviction quashed by Shariah High Court.
(Source: Minivan News)

The Dhivehi Observer has its operations based in the United Kingdom, and so one would imagine that it would be subject to British laws. According the web site, its recently created “guestbook will be moderated in line with Article 25 of the constitution” of the Maldives. The Maldive constitution is currently being revised because it falls short of democratic and human rights norms. Why then does a British web site subject itself to that constitution while operating within the United Kingdom? Are British laws deficient in some way or is this an example of the web site’s general abhorrence of things Western?

Article 25 of the Maldive Constitution reads:

“Every citizen shall have the freedom to express his conscience and thoughts orally or in writing or by other means, unless prohibited by law in the interest of protecting the sovereignty of the Maldives, of maintaining public order and of protecting the basic tenets of Islam.”

Surely British law would guarantee people free expression of their thoughts and conscience within the constraints required for maintaining public order. What is missing in British legislation is placing restrictions on free expression in order to protect the “basic tenets of Islam”. This is what is unacceptable to Dhivehi Observer and so it invokes the Maldive constitution in the United Kingdom over and obove British law. The web site routinely censors material its moderators consider “un-Islamic”.

Dhivehi Observer accepts all sorts of material for publication, that frequently use vulgar language and imagery. It would certainly reject any article in this site if it were submitted for publication, giving credit to this site or its editor- and that won't have anything to do with blandness resulting from a lack of obscenities. According to our contact within Dhivehi Observer, those who supply that web site with information, at great risk to themselves, have threatened to withdraw all support if it carries any references to our web site or any of our articles. For a long time the British online magazine had a link to our web site which was censored in order to appease Islamic fanatics in the Maldives.

The reason for this censorship is our questioning as to why the opposition MDP has a written commitment in section 3.3(a) of its provisional constitution to deny freedom of religion. We are therefore branded as anti-Islamic. The Maldives is a state party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and so section 3.3(a) of the MDP's provisional constitution would be deemed illegal under International Law. The ruling Maldivian People's Party (DRP) also has a similar commitment.

The Maldive opposition movement seeks much support from Western countries in order to bring about democratic change in the Maldives. It is ironic then that the movement and its media organisations do not adhere to the democratic ideals of the West. They also make use of every opportunity to condemn and vilify the West and its institutions when making statements in the local language. Their assumption could be that Westerners are too dumb either to understand the Maldive language or to obtain translations.

Taliban-style mullahs officiate at MDP meeting

An increasing number of Maldivians, mostly sympathetic to the Maldive "democracy" movement, are taking up refugee status, residence and citizenship in Western countries such as Great Britain, Australia and New Zealand. Rather than adopt Western values and integrate in the host countries, many of these people adopt extremely radical anti-Western attitudes and run jihadi campaigns. Often they target and harass others from Maldive backgrounds in order to monitor whether or not they live by the laws of the Maldives and the Shariah. These people do not realise that by doing so they are breaking the laws of their host countries.  

Harassment of the daughters of Adam Zahir, the Maldive police chief:. This picture, containing derogatory comments in the Divehi language, appears on the home page of Dhivehi Observer. One comment reads "women with festering armpits". Does British law allow harassment of innocent women? Islamic fanatics in the Maldive "democracy" movement object to these ladies enjoying a day out on the beach in normal swimwear. The jihadists' other objection is based on these young ladies' failure to observe the burqa. Jihadi funding from the Middle East is currently being used to coerce Maldive women into the burqa. >>more (this picture was quietly removed from the DO home page on 1 February 2007)

Anti-Christian witch-hunt: A woman alleged by Dhivehi Observer to be a Maldivian doing a belly dance in front of a Christmas tree. In a Divehi language comment, Dhivehi Observer denigrates this female and implies that she is a Christian evangelist. The British-based Maldive opposition web site often engages in such jihadi witch-hunts. A favourite theme is accusing people of being Christian missionaries. This woman's father is named as a minister in the presidential compound of the Maldive president of the republic. He is accused of facilitating the "first conference on propagating Christianity" in the Maldives.

Dhivehi Observer is the leading media organ of the Maldive "democracy" movement. That movement claims to have many supporters in the UK, Europe, Australia, the US and more specifically in the British and European parliaments. If there were such supporters, we would like to ask them if they condoned this type of harassment of women based on their parents' association with the Maldive government?

It must also be pointed out that this anti-Christian witch-hunt is undertaken by the Maldive government as well. David Hardingham, the head of a British humanitarian organisation is barred from entering the Maldives after the Maldive authorities alleged that he was a "Christian missionary engaged in Islamic terrorism". This is not such a strange allegation from a government that once arrested an Australian woman of Maldive descent for arriving from Bali (a Hindu island) with a "Buddha used for Christian worship"!