Maldives president back in control

Maldives top court reverses ruling after judges' arrest

Maldives top court reverses ruling after judges' arrest

President Abdulla Yameen attracted global censure for refusing to comply with last week's court order to release his jailed political opponents and to quash the conviction of exiled opposition leader Mohamed Nasheed, who is again pushing for change a decade after he was first elected in the country's first democratic elections.

"During this time, though certain rights will be restricted, general movements, services and businesses will not be affected", a statement issued by the president's office said. India to send envoy, backed by its military, to release judges & pol. detainees inc.

The Indian government has already said that it was "disturbed by the declaration of a state of emergency" and it is now likely that the troops will be kept on standby in case of any eventuality or if Maldives crisis deepens and the nation formally requests help, reported the Press Trust of India.

On Tuesday night, the three judges who were not arrested took an action favourable to Yameen: They nullified parts of the original order, saying the political prisoners should not be released and the convictions should stand.

The annulment came after Mr Yameen declared the state of emergency, which gives officials sweeping powers to make arrests, search and seize property and restrict freedom of assembly.

"In the past few days, I have said the current situation in the Maldives is its internal affairs". The incumbent president, Mohmmed Yameen, does not trust Nasheed and other opposition figures and finds his half-brother ex-president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom even less of a friend than before.

On Wednesday, Mohamed Nasheed, former President, while in Colombo, informed his follower about the arrest of Qasim Ibrahim, a business magnet, philanthropist and politician.

The streets of the capital Male were calm yesterday with only a limited police presence and no sign of any repeat of the opposition protests that broke out last week.

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In 2015, when the government declared a state of emergency because of fears of terrorism, tourist booking plummeted which hit economic growth hard.

"President Yameen has, to put it bluntly, usurped the authority of the State's rule-of-law institutions and its ability to work independently from the executive", the High Commissioner said.

Nasheed says his conviction on terror charges was politically motivated.

On Sunday, Attorney General Mohamed Anil told the media that government has information about the Supreme Court's plan to pass an order to arrest and impeach Yameen.

China - the number one source of tourists for the Maldives - and neighbouring India have already warned their national to defer all non-essential travel, and the United Kingdom and the USA have warned their nationals to exercise caution in Male.

He asked "Yameen and (the) Maldives government to peacefully end the state of emergency, restore all articles of the constitution, take immediate steps to implement in full the order of the Supreme Court, and to permit and support the full, free and proper functioning of Parliament".

He won democratic elections in 2013, defeating Nasheed in a controversial run-off.

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