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International News

Mar 20, 2018

Maldives not to extend state of Emergency

Maldives government has said that it does not intend to extend the emergency beyond Thursday evening, the day on which it expires. The emergency was imposed in the country on 5th of last month for initial 15 days and further extended by 30 days. 

Maldives ambassador to Sri Lanka, Mohamed Hussain Shareef said the government has decided not to extend emergency except for unforeseen circumstances in a couple of days. Addressing a group of foreign journalists in Colombo last evening, Mr Shareef said 38 people were taken into custody during the emergency including two Supreme Court judges and former President Abdul Gayoom. 

He said charges have been pressed against the two judges for trying to overthrow the government and they were produced in a court yesterday. The ambassador said that other detainees will either be released on termination of emergency or proceedings will commence as per law. 

The emergency regulations gave Maldives' security forces sweeping powers, including to arrests and search and seize property.

Maldivian government seems to have achieved the objectives behind emergency in the country. The February 1st judgment of Supreme court has been reversed by remaining judges while bureaucracy and security forces have been purged of anti-government elements. However, the emergency did affect tourist arrival in the country and this has prevented any urge of further extension. 

Meanwhile, criminal charges have been pressed against two judges of Supreme Court and were produced in court yesterday. They have been charged with bribery and corruption cases while attempting to overthrow the government. A total of 38 people including few opposition MPs are under custody since the emergency was imposed last month.

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