Building peace in the minds of men and women

Director-General calls for measures against those responsible for 2014 murder of journalist Ahmed Rilwan Abdulla in the Maldives

19 September 2019

The Director-General of UNESCO today urged measures against the killers of journalist Ahmed Rilwan Abdulla, who had been missing in the Maldives since 8 August 2014 and whose murder was confirmed earlier this month.

“I deplore the sad news of Ahmed Rilwan Abdulla’s murder,” said the Director-General, adding: “This crime is a tragic reminder of the need to protect journalists and I trust that the investigation that revealed Mr Rilwan’s murder will also serve to bring his killers to trial. This is vital as in most such cases impunity prevails, emboldening those who believe that they can get away with gunpoint censorship.”

The Head of the Maldives’ Presidential Commission on Investigation of Murders and Enforced Disappearances on 1 September confirmed that Ahmed Rilwan Abdulla, had been killed. Rilwan, a reporter for the independent news website Minivan News, had received threats via Facebook prior to his disappearance.

UNESCO promotes the safety of journalists through global awareness-raising, capacity building and a range of actions, notably in the framework of the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity.

See also: UNESCO observatory of killed journalists

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Media contact: Sylvie Coudray, s.coudray@unesco.org, +33 (0)1 45 68 08 91