'MDN report is being used as a political tool' - Nasheed

Speaker of Parliament, Mohamed Nasheed on Tuesday stated that the report on radicalization in Maldives by the Maldivian Democracy Network (MDN) is being misconstrued and used as a political tool to attack the current government.

Titled '‘Preliminary Assessment on Radicalisation in the Maldives", the report issued by MDN in 2016 challenged principles and teachings of Islam in the Holy Quran, and disrespected Prophet Mohamed (PBUH). The report outlined several verses from the Quran and 'Hadith' of Prophet Mohamed (PBUH) as examples of ideas that contribute to promulgation of radical worldviews.

In response to Naifaru MP Ahmed Shiyam's criticism towards the government on its failure to take action on the report, Nasheed during Tuesday's parliamentary sitting said that the report was issued during the tenure of the previous government, and that all political parties as well as the current administration has condemned the disrespectful vocabulary and phrasing used in the report to describe Islam and Prophet Mohamed (PBUH).

Nasheed said the basis of the report has been lost, with the remaining content of the report having been dismissed.

"The rest of the report has not been addressed: who is facilitating Maldivians going to Syria? The people speaking against this report most loudly are the very people the report mention as benefactors who fund these trips. The purpose of the report has been lost", Nasheed said.

Nasheed's statement was in reference to the accusations in the report that said Maldivians joining foreign wars were aided by Maldivian scholars of Islam. The report has sparked the outrage of religious scholars as well as the public.

He further said the MDN report is being used as a weapon attack the current government.

While the contents of the report have prompted harsh criticism, the organization has been temporarily suspended pending investigation, Maldives Police Service are summoning the authors of the report and other relevant individuals for investigation purposes.