MDN officially dissolved over contentious report

Maldivian Democracy Network (MDN) has been officially dissolved.

Religious scholars and the public have been calling to ban the non-partisan organization following a contentious publication by the organization titled "Preliminary Assessment on Radicalization in the Maldives", which challenged Islamic principles, and slandered prophet Mohamed (PBUH).

The report published in 2016 outlined several verses from the Quran and 'Hadith' of Prophet Mohamed (PBUH) as examples of ideas that contribute to promulgation of radical worldviews.

While the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment (the supervisory authority in-charge of clubs and organizations), temporarily suspended the organization earlier this October pending investigation, the ministry on November 5 made the decision to ban the organization based on the findings of the police investigation conducted on the matter. The organization was granted a period of 45 days to make arrangements regarding their debts and assets.

After the period ended this Sunday, the Ministry on Thursday issued a statement that said that the organization had not made any comments or claims regarding their debts and assets within the granted period. Therefore, the organization has now been officially dissolved, read the statement.

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih had earlier assured that the matter will be thoroughly investigated and appropriate measures will be taken as stipulated under the Maldives constitution. However, protests and rallies were held across Maldives due to lack of action against the organization, and called to ban the NGO.

MDN had later apologized for the content of the report and took the publication off their website. At the time, the organization had stated that they were working with religious scholars to revise and amend the report. However, members of the organization spoke in defense of the report even after that.