Maldives declares state of emergency for 15 days

Political unrest hits the shores of the Maldives

President Abdulla Yameen has declared a 15-day state of emergency in the Maldives, suspending parliament and sending police to the Supreme Court, reported Reuters.

Security forces have arrested former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, who is the estranged half-brother of Yameen, and two Supreme Court judges as a crackdown on the opposition intensifies.

Political unrest hits the shores of the Maldives

The emergency decree gives Yameen sweeping powers to make arrests, curtailed power of the country’s judiciary and removed immunity granted to Supreme Court judges.

Yameen has rejected adhering to the court, which last week ordered the release of political prisoners and the reinstatement of elected members of parliament.

Political tension has been mounting in the Indian Ocean state, as opposition supporters on Sunday took to the streets to urge the government to obey the court order.

The latest tumult comes at a time when the island nation is entering into the peak tourism season. China, the US and India have issued travel advisories for the Maldives.

Meanwhile, the Maldivian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has stated that no curfew will be imposed and that services and business “will not be affected”.

There will also be no restrictions on travelling to or from the popular holiday destination, and all transportation remains operational, according to the department.

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