Maldives court annuls 1st round presidential vote, says flawed register affected result

The Supreme Court of the Maldives has annulled the results of the first round of voting in the country's presidential election, agreeing with a losing candidate's claim that the election was flawed.

Four judges of a seven-member panel on Monday decided that some 5,600 votes cast in the Sept. 7 first round were flawed and the vote therefore indecisive on which candidates qualified for a runoff. The court ordered a first round revote before Oct. 20.

Former President Mohamed Nasheed led the vote with more than 45 percent but failed to get the needed 50 percent. Yaamin Abdul Gayoom — brother of the South Asia country's former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom — finished second.

Businessman Qasim Ibrahim, who finished a close third, complained that he was denied a runoff slot because of a wrong voter registry.