Mal­dives troops block­ade par­lia­ment as cri­sis wors­ens

Muscat Daily - - WORLD -

Malé, Mal­dives - Mal­di­vian troops block­aded par­lia­ment and clashed with op­po­si­tion lead­ers for a sec­ond day, wit­nesses said on Tues­day, as po­lit­i­cal tur­moil es­ca­lated in the trou­bled hon­ey­moon is­lands.

The lat­est tur­bu­lence came as the UK urged its cit­i­zens to take cau­tion in the cap­i­tal Male af­ter sol­diers tear gassed protest­ing politi­cians there.

Sol­diers barred the main op­po­si­tion Mal­di­vian Demo­cratic Party (MDP) from en­ter­ing the heav­ily guarded par­lia­ment com­plex again on Tues­day, with wit­nesses re­port­ing shov­ing as MPs were forced back from the bar­ri­cade.

“Even when par­lia­ment is not in session, MPs are free to go to the build­ing and at­tend to their work, but it is not al­lowed now,” MDP spokesman Hamid Ab­dul Ghafoor said. “This is ridicu­lous.”

The par­lia­ment gates were pad­locked by sol­diers on Mon­day in a move de­scribed as il­le­gal by ex­iled Mal­di­vian op­po­si­tion leader Mo­hamed Nasheed.

An op­po­si­tion coali­tion, united against Pres­i­dent Ab­dulla Yameen, had been threat­en­ing to move a no-con­fi­dence mo­tion against the speaker in a bid to im­peach the Pres­i­dent’s ally.

But MPs try­ing to en­ter the com­pound were hit with pep­per spray and forcibly evicted.

Yameen’s of­fice said in a state­ment on Tues­day that par­lia­ment was closed ahead of an ‘in­com­ing VVIP visit’.

Pak­istan Prime Min­is­ter Nawaz Sharif is in the Mal­dives as the trop­i­cal is­land na­tion cel­e­brates its 52nd an­niver­sary, the Pak­istan High Com­mis­sion in Sri Lanka said.

“The spe­cial mea­sures taken by the se­cu­rity forces at the par­lia­ment build­ing on 24 July 2017 were to en­sure the se­cu­rity and safety of the premises, as man­dated by the... con­sti­tu­tion,” Yameen’s of­fice said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Oman

© PressReader. All rights reserved.