Crime Society & Culture

Family and friends mark 100 days since Yameen Rasheed’s murder

The family and friends of slain liberal blogger Yameen Rasheed marked 100 days since the murder with a tweetstorm and a silent vigil outside his home in Malé.

Friends, colleagues and members of civil society groups joined Yameen’s mother and sisters for the vigil Tuesday afternoon, lining up outside the Spatula house in the Maafanu ward of the capital with placards and posters and writing messages of sympathy and remembrance.

Earlier in the day, a tweetstorm was dedicated to Yameen, a prolific and popular social media user.

The 29-year-old human rights defender, satirist and IT professional was found with 35 stab wounds in the stairwell of his apartment building in the early hours of April 23.

On Sunday, the Prosecutor General’s office pressed charges against seven suspects arrested in connection with the murder.

“The police asked to charge eight, we are charging seven. Six of the suspects are charged with murder and one suspect is charged with aiding and abetting,” PG office spokesman Ahmed Thaufeeg told the Maldives Independent.

In mid-June, the police revealed that Ismail Rasheed, 25, Ismail Haisham Rasheed, 21, and Ahmed Zihan Ismail, 22, have been identified with “substantial evidence for prosecution” as the prime suspects who committed the murder. The identities of the other five suspects remain unclear.

Yameen’s family at the time welcomed the progress in the investigation but urged the police to reveal the motive of the three young men and their sources of funding.

The family previously questioned the ability of the police to conduct an impartial and credible investigation due to the failure to arrest suspects in the abduction of Maldives Independent journalist Ahmed Rilwan and the near-fatal attack on blogger Hilath Rasheed.

Like Yameen, both Rilwan and Hilath were prominent liberal voices against radicalisation.

Rilwan’s mother and other family members attended Tuesday’s vigil in solidarity with Yameen, who was leading a campaign seeking justice for his abducted friend.

Shortly before the arrest of the first suspects in early May, Yameen’s family also sued the police over the failure to protect him despite numerous death threats reported since 2014.

Last month, the civil court judge presiding over the case asked the National Integrity Commission to look into alleged negligence by the police and informed the family that he would decide whether to proceed with the lawsuit based on the response from the police watchdog body.

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Source URL:  Maldives Independent

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