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Maldives crisis: state of emergency declared for 15 days

Maldives President Abdulla Yameen declared a state of emergency in the country and arrested the CJI and other Supreme Court Judges.

 

Abdulla Yameen, the President of Maldives declared a state of emergency for 15 days. The president had been in a tussle with the Supreme Court of the country for past few days. The allies of President Abdulla Yameen believe that the Supreme Court is conspiring to bring down the government.

The court had earlier ordered Yameen to release nine opposition leaders who were jailed by his government. However, Yameen refused to comply.

In a televised address, Legal Affairs Minister of Maldives Azima Shakoor announced the emergency on Tuesday. Hours after the announcement, Maldives Chief Justice Abdulla Saeed and another Supreme Court judge were arrested. As per the Maldives law, judges will no longer be granted special privileges if they are facing arrest.

The security forces barged in the court complex in Male on Tuesday and Justices Saeed and Ali Hameed were arrested along with the court’s top administrator Hassan Saeed. In a brief statement, the police cited complaints of corruption against them in a brief statement.

 “The government of Maldives wishes to also assure all Maldivians and the international community that the safety of all Maldivians and foreigners living in and visiting the Maldives, will be ensured,” the statement from President office said.

 The top court had also ordered to reinstate 12 legislators who had been sacked for defecting to the opposition. The development had effectively given the opposition a majority in the 85-member parliament. It also led to a possible impeachment of Yameen.

The high profile arrests of the judges and CJI followed came after the arrest of ex-president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, the separated half-brother of Yameen. Gayoom had sided with the main opposition and campaigned for the toppling of his half-brother.

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