Major media network Al Jazeera on Thursday night revealed that the Turkish government blacklisted 134 Maldivian insurgents over the civil war in Syria.
While a significant number of Maldivians are taking part in the conflict, many have been killed on the battlefield. Most of these insurgents enter Syria through the Turkish-Syria border.
According to a documentary prepared by Al Jazeera over the increasing religious extremism in Maldives, Turkish officials deported over 25 Maldivians suspected of attempting to enter warzones, in addition to the 134 individuals on the blacklist.
Formerly, charges were pressed against some suspects for allegedly travelling to warzones but none of the cases were proven.
On Thursday, President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih declared all areas of Syria as warzones under the amended Anti Terrorism Act. Therefore, travelling to Syria without authorisation from the government is now banned for all Maldivian citizens.
The recent amendments to the Act now state that travelling to a warzone without authorisation results in a prison sentence of five to seven years even if the individual does not take part in the conflict.