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Five opposition youth arrested during protest, released from custody

Farah Ahmed
20 February 2018, MVT 07:41
Opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) youth wing's president Mickail Naseem (C) amidst a collision between the police and protestors. PHOTO / MDP YOUTH WING
Farah Ahmed
20 February 2018, MVT 07:41

Five individuals who were arrested from an opposition rally that called the government to enforce the landmark Supreme Court ruling, was released from police custody Monday.

The individuals were arrested on February 10 for disobeying law enforcement officers and barring them from carrying out their duties.

Some of the detainees included three members of main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party’s (MDP) youth wing, including its president Mickail Naseem, the council president of Gahdhoo in Gaafu Dhaalu atoll and a councillor from Rasdhoo in Alif Alif atoll.

Since the Supreme Court issued the unprecedented ruling early February that ordered the release of nine high-profile political prisoners and reinstate 12 expelled lawmakers, and annulled its previous ruling on floor crossing, the opposition has been rallying daily, calling the government to enforce the top court’s order and to stop its alleged unconstitutional acts.

However, armed security forces continue to dismantle the rallies, and they have been accused of using excessive force when dealing with peaceful protestors. The police were especially under fire last weekend for targeting journalists without reasonable cause.

Meanwhile, the government is seeking to extend the state of emergency, which came into effect on February 5, via the parliament. An extraordinary parliament sitting was held Monday where the government had proposed to extend the state of emergency for a duration of 30 days.

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