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Heightened security in Maldives following Sri Lanka blasts

Fathmath Shaahunaz
21 April 2019, MVT 21:55
Chief of Defence Force Major General Abdulla Shamaal (L) and Commissioner of Police Mohamed Hameed hold press conference on national security, in the wake of the explosions in Sri Lanka on April 21, 2019. PHOTO/MNDF
Fathmath Shaahunaz
21 April 2019, MVT 21:55

National security was increased in Maldives following the string of terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka on Sunday, announced Maldives Police Service and Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF).

In the wake of eight blasts in and around Colombo on Sunday which killed over 200 people and injured more than 400, Chief of Defence Force Major General Abdulla Shamaal announced that security forces are currently in talks with relevant authorities to identify any possibilities of a similar threat to Maldives.

Speaking at a press conference held at MNDF headquarters in capital Male', he shared that discussions were also held regarding increasing security at resorts and guesthouses, such as stationing security managers and training them.

Shamaal stressed that the decision to tighten security is a preventive measure.

He revealed that MNDF and Police met officials of Maldives Customs Service, Maldives Immigration and the tourism sector, and put together a framework on reporting suspicious behaviour of visitors, to the authorities.

Shedding further light on the steps to be taken, Commissioner of Police Mohamed Hameed stated that more security will be deployed at some areas in Male' City, and heavier security measures will be put in place at airports and tourism-related areas.

Hameed also reassured that the decision to tighten security was not due to intelligence of any planned attacks on Maldives.

The commissioner further reiterated that they have not received reports of any Maldivians being involved in the terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka, adding that Maldives is in talks with relevant foreign bodies.

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