Maldives: Torture Techniques in Paradise

The blog Groundsix notes some of the torture techniques used on detainees and prisoners in the Maldives.

Putting in stocks: The victim is restrained with his or her ankles and wrists locked in tiny holes in a block of wood. The victim remains bent and does not have the use of his/her hands when eating. Defecation and urination is done on the spot and the victim remains with his or her own human waste for days on end. Victims of the stocks almost invariably suffer from spinal conditions for life, if they survive this ordeal.

Gang rape of women prisoners. Sometimes other women inmates are forced to watch this in order to inflict psychological torture on them. (Those who have been forced to watch this are known to have hung themselves)

“Mounting on the angle”: The victim’s arms are passed backwards through the vertical bars (about 60 cm apart) of the vent above the door in a prison cell. The wrists are then tightly handcuffed. The body is left dangling for hours at a time. The victim almost invariably has both shoulders and/or elbows dislocated during this exercise. Indiscriminate beating. Often officials wearing military-style boots stomp on the victim. (In one well-documented case, a 17 year old youth was beaten up on the spinal area, in the interrogation room. He was paralysed for life.)

Torture has been widely used in the Maldives to sustain the current regime in power. Association for the Prevention of Torture and Ill-treatment in the Maldives has documented several cases of torture.

Recent rise in police brutality has prompted Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) to hold a demonstration.

Maldives is known to the world as a great holiday destination. Tourism statistics for January show a record number of visits by tourists. UK-based organization Friends of Maldives (FOM) has initiated a Maldives Selected Resorts Boycott to discourage tourists from spending holidays in resorts that have links with the ruling regime. FOM says the boycott is not intended to stop people from visiting Maldives.

FOM are asking tourists to make an ethical choice on where they choose to spend their holidays. If you choose this resort belonging to X then you will be supporting a man who directly supports the 28 year dictatorship of President Maumoon Gayoom – If you choose a resort that is NOT on the list then you can enjoy your holiday in full – conscience free.


  • john

    The president of Maldives suppose to be a Muslim. How can a Muslim do all these cruel things to another fellow Muslim. The hypocrisy of Maumoon Abdul Gayyoom is that when he goes to Friday prayers and preaches about peacefulness of Islam and Islam is all about non violence and against torture. Then why is he ordering all these torturer and torturing his fellow Muslims.
    The answer is he not a Muslim. He is a dictator and a hypocrite. He the most cruel president the Maldivian has ever seen.

  • baphomet

    Maumoon Abdul Gayyoom would do anything to suppress any opposition to his regime. Let alone the factor of being a Muslim follower, killing a fellow Maldivian just for criticizing his political motives would be of no surprise. He is a cruel dictator, a tyrant.

  • […] Torture by Maldivian police on detainees has come under spotlight once again with the discovery of a badly beaten body from water in the morning of April 15 in the capital Male’. The young man Hussain Solah was under police custody a few days before his death. Even though the police claim that he was released on April 13, there are no reliable witnesses who had seen him after that. He made no contact with family and friends after his supposed release from police custody. […]

  • jorn

    this is not true i think, because opposition wanst to undermine the current government so they want influencing hese matter, i believed the victim was beaten by some one ,but w have to first investigate the case,the current governmebt is fecilitating the autopsy from lanka.and they r providing all the asistance to the victim family,

  • […] The yard of the workshop was the infamous ‘Range’ area, where prisoners are subjected to most inhumane torture in the Maldives. At least 12 security guards beat Evan with their bare hands, wooden planks, riot batons and boots. […]

  • din

    god will punish their future generations for all their acts.

  • […] incident also shows the level of frustration in the traditionally peaceful Maldivian society. After enduring torture at the hands of a ruthless regime for almost 30 years, the people are lured into religious fanaticism and political extremism. […]

  • Ayazel

    what about the police brutality now in 2010?They say that they don’t use violence but they do.Handcuffing backwards crossed is not violence?I still can’t feel my thumbs.What about the first timers being slapped around to make them “Behave”.One of my friends was brought in with three places broken in his head.Police at Maafannu Villi did this him.They opened the interview room door with his head cracking open his skull.

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