Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Geneva
Switzerland, Liechtenstein

statement704

Universal Periodic Review Working Group – 22nd Session

Universal Periodic Review of Maldives

Australian Statement

Australia welcomes the Maldives engagement in the Human Rights Council and the UPR. However, Australia remains concerned by the conduct of the trial of former President Nasheed and subsequent unrest in the Maldives. As a party to the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights the Maldives has obligations relating to fundamental rights and freedoms, including due process, judicial fairness and the rule of law. Australia calls on the Maldives to safeguard these rights for all Maldivians. Australia recommends that the Maldives upholds freedoms essential for a stable democracy, including freedoms of speech and assembly.

Australia is opposed to the use of the death penalty in all circumstances. Australia is concerned that the Maldives has gazetted procedural regulations, which enables the implementation of the death penalty for intentional murder and removes the power for the president to commute death sentences. Australia recommends the Maldives remove these regulations and renew its commitment to a moratorium on the death penalty.

Australia commends the Maldives on its progress to protect women from domestic violence, including through the ratification of the Domestic Violence Prevention Act. Australia recommends the Maldives implements stronger complaints and prosecution mechanisms for survivors, and improved services including provision of more shelters. Australia remains concerned about the low number of women represented in government, and encourages stronger action to facilitate women’s participation in politics and government.