Maldives declares state of emergency, arrests top judges

Feb 06, 2018 (LBO) – President of Maldive Islands, Abdulla Yameen declared a 15-day state of emergency, Monday night and later arrested Chief Justice Abdulla Saeed and another Supreme Court judge, foreign media reports said.

The moves comes following a Supreme Court ruling that overturned “terrorism” convictions against nine of the Presidents political opponents.

The emergency decree gives security forces sweeping powers to make arrests, curtails the authority of the judiciary and scrapped immunity granted to Supreme Court judges.

Soon after the emergency declaration on Monday, soldiers forced their way into the Supreme Court building.

Husnu Al Suood, president of the Maldives Bar Association and a former attorney general of the Maldives, was quoted as saying in media that security forces locked up the Supreme Court with the judges inside.

Yameen has also ordered the arrest of his estranged half-brother, former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, who has sided with the opposition.