Maldives parliament approves extension of state of emergency

Published February 20, 2018

Maldives' parliament has approved a 30-day extension of a state of emergency declared by the president to strengthen his power after the Supreme Court ordered the release of imprisoned political opponents.

The speaker of parliament, Abdulla Maseeh, announced that the motion was approved Tuesday after 37 ruling party lawmakers in the 85-member house voted in favor and opposition lawmakers boycotted the balloting.

The state of emergency declared by President Yameen Abdul Gayoom was to expire Tuesday evening, and he had asked the legislature to extend it.

Under the emergency law, Yameen had two Supreme Court judges arrested, accusing them of corruption. Later, the remaining three judges annulled the order to release Yameen's opponents, who were convicted in widely criticized trials.