Maldives to enforce death penalty in Sep

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom on Sunday, announced that death penalty will be implemented in the Maldives next month.

Since taking office in 2013, president Yameen has been pushing to enforce the death penalty after ending the de facto moratorium that has been in place in the country for over six decades.

In June last year, capital punishment regulations were amended to allow for hanging in addition to lethal injections as methods of execution.

The government has already set-up an execution chamber in the country's main prison in Maafushi island and had announced plans for a second.

Speaking at a ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) ceremony, President stated that his home minister had informed that all preparations to implement the death penalty, including all resources and facilities would be completed before the end of September.

The methods of execution to be used in the Maldives are hanging and lethal injection. The government sanctioned practice will be carried out after criminal procedures under the rules established by the government.

There are currently three convicts on death row who have been sentenced. They are Hussain Humam convicted of murdering Dr Afrasheem Ali, Ahmed Murrath convicted of murdering Ahmed Najeeb and Mohamed Nabeel convicted of murdering Abdulla Farhad.

Amnesty International has recently accused the government of looking to enforce the death penalty to divert attention from the ongoing political turmoil in the archipelago.

“For more than sixty years, the Maldives led the way in the region by shunning this cruel and irreversible punishment. Now, when most of the world has rid itself of the death penalty, the country risks being on the wrong side of history and earning global notoriety for reviving its use,” said Biraj Patnaik, Amnesty International’s South Asia Director.

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