Mal­dives an­nounces end to state of emer­gency

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

MAL…, Mal­dives: The Mal­dives gov­ern­ment an­nounced yes­ter­day an end to a state of emer­gency, which was im­posed last week af­ter an al­leged at­tempt to as­sas­si­nate Pres­i­dent Ab­dulla Yameen.

“The Gov­ern­ment of the Mal­dives to­day has lifted the state of emer­gency in the coun­try with im­me­di­ate ef­fect,” said a for­eign min­istry state­ment. “With the lift­ing of the state of emer­gency, all fun­da­men­tal rights that were sus­pended, have been re­stored.”

The gov­ern­ment had reached its de­ci­sion af­ter the se­cu­rity forces ad­vised Yameen that “the over­all se­cu­rity sit­u­a­tion in the coun­try has im­proved”, the state­ment added.

Yameen im­posed the state of emer­gency last Wed­nes­day in a move that gave wider pow­ers to po­lice and armed forces to ar­rest and sus­pend­ing free­dom of assem­bly and move­ment.

The Mal­dives, a pop­u­lar des­ti­na­tion for hon­ey­moon­ers, has been rocked by po­lit­i­cal un­rest in re­cent months, which reached new heights last week when vice pres­i­dent Ahmed Adeeb was im­peached.

Adeeb, whose pre­de­ces­sor was also im­peached in July, has been ac­cused of high trea­son over an ex­plo­sion on the pres­i­den­tial speed­boat in Septem­ber that left Yameen un­hurt but in­jured his wife and one of his body­guards. The state of emer­gency con­tains pow­ers that had en­abled Yameen’s gov­ern­ment to fast-track the im­peach­ment process against Adeeb.

Yameen had in­sisted that it was nec­es­sary to use dra­co­nian pow­ers to deal with a threat to his life and the sta­bil­ity of the na­tion of 340,000 Sunni Mus­lims liv­ing in a clus­ter of 1,192 tiny co­ral is­lands across the equa­tor in the In­dian Ocean.

How­ever, his at­tor­ney-gen­eral Mo­hamed Anil while read­ing out a pres­i­den­tial de­cree re­mov­ing the emer­gency said the tough laws were no longer re­quired and there was no threat to the atoll na­tion, whose tourism in­dus­try took a nose dive af­ter the state of emer­gency was im­posed.

The for­mer colo­nial power Bri­tain as well as the United States, the Euro­pean Union and neigh­bor­ing Sri Lanka had called for an im­me­di­ate end to the emer­gency which was seen as a tool to sup­press dis­sent. — AFP

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