| DATE: 2007-07-14 | HAVEERU
Three men accused of sexually assaulting an underaged schoolgirl and uploading explicit content of the assault onto the internet were arrested by Thinadhoo Police Station on Wednesday.
The assault had occurred on the 30th of last month after the three men had kidnapped the 16-year-old Gaafu Dhaalu atoll Vaadhoo School student while she was walking on the street. The men had sexually assaulted her after dragging her off to a nearby vacant house. They had also taken pictures of the assault which they had later uploaded onto the internet.
Two of the men were Fares-Maathodaa residents while one was from Vaadhoo. The men were arrested after police had received information from the victim.According to a police official, Thinadhoo Police Station has now confiscated the pictures and the case is now being investigated.
Sexual abuse has been a taboo in our society for long. According to well-informed people that I know, it has been a problem in our society for long. However, the escalation of the issues "put under the carpet" coupled with the onslaught of globalization and the information technology explosion, has never been fully understood or appreciated. Maldivian naievity has allowed the culprits to explore new avenues for their fantasies without legal or social impediments. Awareness on related issues has been neglected or blocked for fear of turnishing the "good name" of the country.
It is this fear that has conveniently neglected the related aspects of human development and empowerment, for children and parents as well as enacting legislation and the creation of social infrastructure and civil society organs capable of handling future issues (now current).
This neglect needs to be addressed right now if we care for our future. But, who cares?