Tag Archives: Maldives

Maldives: UN rights expert urges Maldives reforms after mass suspension of lawyers

November 9, 2017

Image result for United Nations Human Rights

The UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, Diego García-Sayán, has urged the Maldives to introduce urgent reforms and rectifications after the indefinite suspension of 54 lawyers.

“I call on the authorities to create an independent bar association to oversee lawyers’ affairs,” said the Special Rapporteur. “Its priorities should include protecting lawyers’ independence, defending their interests and enforcing disciplinary measures. It should be self-regulating as well as independent.”

The suspended lawyers had signed a petition raising serious concerns about the independence and functioning of the country’s justice system. Some of them had assembled outside the Supreme Court on 30 August trying to submit the petition and calling for judicial reforms. Their suspension was announced by the Department of Judicial Administration less than two weeks later, on 10 September.

“Just like everyone else, lawyers are entitled to freedom of opinion, expression, association and peaceful assembly,” said the Special Rapporteur. “In particular, they have the right to take part in public discussions on matters concerning the law, the administration of justice and the protection of human rights.

“This alarming mass suspension clearly did not abide by international standards regulating disciplinary proceedings against lawyers and protecting their independence, and I strongly condemn it. Not only are the grounds for suspension dubious, but the lawyers have so far not been granted a fair hearing and they have no avenue for appeal.”

The Special Rapporteur noted that the suspended lawyers could represent one third of the lawyers in private practice in the Maldives, and more than half the lawyers licensed to practise before the Criminal Court.






Maldives: ICJ calls on the Supreme Court to revoke summary suspension of lawyers for urging judicial reform

September 27, 2017

In an open letter, the ICJ called on the Supreme Court of the Maldives and the Department of Judicial Administration to revoke the summary suspensions of dozens of lawyers in the country.

On 10 September 2017, the Department of Judicial Administration (DJA), the administrative arm of the Maldivian judiciary supervised directly by the Supreme Court, suspended 54 lawyers without due process.

Their suspension follows a petition by 56 lawyers (two of whom were already under suspension) that called for reforms to ensure independence of the judiciary.

The lawyers’ suspension, procedurally and substantively, is incompatible with international law and standards, said the ICJ.







http://www.idhae.org/observatoire-fr-wews170910.htm (FRANCAIS)

https://www.cnb.avocat.fr/fr/actualites/56-avocats-aux-maldives-sont-suspendus (FRANCAIS)

Maldives: Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) Speaks out in Support of 56 Lawyers Summarily Suspended in Maldives After Calling for Judicial Reform

September 20, 2017

Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) has joined a number of prominent international non-governmental organisations in calling on the Supreme Court of the Maldives to rescind the indefinite suspension of 56 lawyers who signed a joint petition raising concerns over the conduct of the judiciary and calling for judicial reforms and independence.

Following receipt of the petition, the Department of Judicial Administration published an announcement via Twitter stating that 56 lawyers would be indefinitely suspended from legal practice and investigated for obstructing the independence of the judiciary, remarking on the duties of the judiciary and attempting to influence the courts by preparing and signing an illegal document against the jurisdiction, procedures and decisions of the courts in violation of various laws, including the Constitution of the Maldives.

It is reported that the lawyers’ petition had raised several rule of law concerns including the Court’s alleged tendency to rule on critical matters late at night and suspend dissenting lawyers without due process. The UN Human Rights Council has previously raised concerns about violations of the right to a fair trial and allegations of political bias by the judiciary of the Maldives, however the Maldivian Government rejects all such criticism as unlawful infringements against the judiciary.

ALHR President Benedict Coyne said, “It appears that none of the 56 lawyers have been allowed to exercise their right to defend themselves or be heard before a professional disciplinary body and have no redress mechanism available to challenge their suspension.”



Maldives: Maldives suspends lawyers demanding rule of law

September 11, 2017

The Maldives' image as a tourism paradise is being tarnished by political unrest

Maldives authorities suspended 56 lawyers on Monday, including all those who are defending dissidents, for demanding the rule of law in the politically restive archipelago.

The Department of Judicial Administration (DJA) said those who signed a petition making the demand were suspended indefinitely because they had violated several laws and were in contempt of court.

“The petition is an unlawful document and signing it is an act that interferes and puts pressure on the justice system,” said a DJA statement.

The ban applies to over a third of the 150 lawyers in private practice in the Maldives and to the entire legal team of exiled opposition leader Mohamed Nasheed and other dissidents.

An alliance of four opposition parties said the suspension by President Abdulla Yameen’s government means dissidents would no longer have access to quality legal counsel.

“An immediate practical implication of the suspension is that individuals unfairly targeted by President Yameen´s regime will find it virtually impossible to find effective legal counsel,” they said in a statement.








Maldives Must Respect its Commitment to Protect the Independence of Lawyers

The UIA has learned about the recent, immediate and unwarranted suspension of more than one third of the Maldives Bar Association members, and is profoundly concerned by the situation.

Last Monday, September 11, 2017, the Maldives authorities indefinitely suspended 56 lawyers, charging them with contempt of court. The indefinite suspensions were announced hours after the lawyers submitted a petition to the Attorney General expressing concern that courts were conducting cases in disregard of the Rule of Law.

Last June the Maldives adopted a UN Human Rights Council resolution recalling the Basic Principles on the Role of Lawyers, expressing deep concern about the significant number of attacks against lawyers as well as unlawful interference with the independent practice of their profession, and highlighting the necessity to protect lawyers against attack.

Today, the Maldives’ authorities must immediately comply with their commitments and take all necessary measures, as required by the separation of powers, to revoke the suspension order against the 56 lawyers, respecting and protecting the immunity of lawyers in the exercise of their functions. The government of the Maldives must safeguard the development of the legal profession and ensure that present or future actions that impact the exercise of the legal profession are consistent with the Maldives’ international obligations under international human rights law, including with respect to the rights of lawyers and the independence of the legal profession.

https://www.lextimes.fr/actualites/maldives/luia-denonce-la-suspension-de-cinquante-six-avocats (FRANCAIS)

Maldives: Lawyers Suood and Ali Hussain “temporarily suspended” from the courts

October 31, 2016

Lawyers Husnu Al Suood and Ali Hussain have been suspended from representing clients at any Maldives court.

According a statement issued by the Department of Judicial Administration on Monday, Supreme Court has decided to “temporarily” suspend both attorneys from representing clients at any court in the country.

It said that the bans were being imposed on the two for violating the sanctity of the courts, and that the bans will only be lifted after the investigation on the matter completes.

The statement said that the step was taken to protect the sanctity of the courts.

Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court issued a warning saying that lawyers violating the sanctity of the courts “will be temporarily or permanently” banned from the courts.

It said that individuals, including lawyers have been violating the sanctity of the courts, and that the necessary action will be taken against any lawyers proven to have done so.

Following the ban, Suood tweeted that the Supreme Court had “disbarred” him and that the “voice of justice and human rights cannot be silenced.” His tweet was re-tweeted by the U.S. Ambassador to the Maldives, Atul Keshap.




UK/Maldives: Amal Clooney Reportedly Receives Death Threats, Husband George Beefs Up Security

March 10, 2016

George Clooney and his wife Amal

(Cast member George Clooney and his wife Amal arrive on the red carpet for the screening of the movie ‘Hail, Caesar!’, during the opening gala of the 66th Berlinale International Film Festival, in Berlin, Germany February 11, 2016.)

George Clooney has reportedly been forced to step up security after his human rights lawyer wife Amal received death threats. She is currently receiving death threats for defending jailed former Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed. The Clooneys have taken drastic measures to protect their mansion in Berkshire, U.K.

The couple has been advised not to travel without bodyguards and are being driven to restaurants. South Oxfordshire district councillor Paul Harrison, who has been involved in negotiations to beef up surveillance at the Clooneys’ home, said the security was for Amal rather than George. “From George’s point of view, the high-level legal work she does and the death threats she gets, it’s quite serious,” Harrison said.

The 54-year-old actor’s massive security plan for his Berkshire home has been rejected as it was thought to infringe the privacy of neighbors. The “Tomorrowland” actor had planned to set up six cameras but now it has been reduced to three. Also, the coverage of the cameras has now been reduced from 19.7 feet to 9.8 feet, which locals are reportedly happy with.

George’s concern for his 38-year-old wife is very valid in the wake of Amal’s co-counsel, Mahfooz Saeed being stabbed in the head outside his hotel in Male in September. The incident happened just before Amal Clooney visited Nasheed in the Maafushi prison.


UK/Maldives: Amal menacée de mort, George renforce la sécurité de leur maison

le 14 mars, 2016


Quand il s’agit de protéger son épouse en danger, George Clooney sort l’artillerie lourde. Selon des informations diffusées par la chaîne de télévision américaine Fox 11 Eyewitness News, son épouse, l’avocate en droit pénal international Amal Clooney, serait la cible de menaces de mort, en lien avec le dossier sur lequel la juriste libano-britannique travaille depuis plusieurs mois. Pour garantir sa sécurité, George aurait fait installer le must en système de vidéosurveillance dans leur demeure du Berkshire (Royaume-Uni).

Le dossier est effectivement un tantinet épineux. Rappel des faits : en septembre 2015, Amal s’est emparée de l’affaire Mohamed Nasheed, leader du Parti démocratique maldivien (MDP) et premier président des Maldives élu démocratiquement en 2008. La juriste le défend et demande la révision de son procès. Quatre ans après son élection, en 2012, l’homme avait été destitué au cours de ce qu’il considère comme un coup d’État, au profit de l’actuel président Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom. Arrêté, Mohamed Nasheed a ensuite  été jugé en février 2015 pour terrorisme et condamné à treize ans de prison. Depuis, l’homme est surnommé le « Mandela des Maldives ».