Malé, Maldives – The Criminal Court on Saturday ordered Deputy Mayor of Malé City Council Ahmed Nareesh to be held in remand for two days.
Nareesh was arrested on Friday afternoon near the Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) office area, just before the protest organised by the PPM/PNC coalition started. Police stated that he was arrested for obstruction of their work.
Along with Nareesh, former MP of Hoarafushi constituency Mohamed Ismail and current MPs of Guraidhoo constituency and Maavashu constituency Ghassan Mauoon and Mohamed Saeed were also arrested, however, during the arrest. While Mohamed Ismail got a remand order of 7 days, the sitting MPs were let go from custody.
Local reports have confirmed that other members of the protest were also arrested and some have been held in remand as well.
Prior to the “Neyvaaholhiah” protest held yesterday, Police informed the opposition to refrain from hosting the protest and described the protest as unlawful, warning the public that any on-land and sea vehicles seen to be participating in the event and encouraging unlawful behaviour would be stopped and searched. Legal action would also be taken against the those who break the law and the protest will be diffused, said the Police.
In the statement released by Maldives Police Service on Thursday night regarding the protest, the authority said that there are multiple reasons to believe that the protest would not be in accordance with the Freedom of Peaceful Assembly Act.
Meanwhile the Elections Commission also urged political parties to organise political activities in line with diplomatic policies and to respect international relationships. The Commission also reminded political parties to obey the orders of official government authorities.