Police investigate threat calling to release those arrested over bomb plot

Main road of Maradhoo district, Addu City | Photo: Meandering Wild

Addu City, Maldives – Police are investigating a case in Addu City today calling for the release of those arrested in a counter-terrorism operation and threatening to carry out a terrorist attack if they do not do so.

A sign outside the Maradhoo Youth Center called for peace without bloodshed. The document also says that this is the last warning to release their bothers. The article used a symbol believed to be the flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

Police said the incident has come to their attention and they are investigating.

According to police, 14 people were ben arrested in the counter-terrorism operation carried out by Maldives Police Service and Maldives National Defence Force in November 2022.

They were planning to use explosives to attack places in Maldives. 10 people were arrested and 11 houses were searched in Addu City, two in Malé City and two in Guradhoo island. They are all Maldivian men from Addu City.

Terrorism and Violent Extremism Investigation Unit Head Inspector of Police Uswat Ahmed told the press after the counter-terrorism operation that the attack was planned out by supporters of the terrorist group ISIS.

Some items related to the case have been recovered from the houses of the arrested persons. These items are being analyzed, she said. Nine of the 14 people arrested in connection with the case have previously been arrested in terrorism cases.

“The purpose of the operation conducted by the Maldives Police Service and the Maldives National Defense Force was to thwart the plot of those who were planning to endanger the lives of many civilians,” Uswat explained.

However, police did not disclose the location of the attack as the case is under investigation.