Maldives suspends 56 lawyers who cited violations by courts

The head of the Maldives' private bar association says the country's legal supervisory board has suspended 56 lawyers after they accused the country's courts and other institutions of not upholding the rule of law.

Lawyer Husnu Suood said Monday that the Department of Judicial Administration announced the indefinite suspensions Sunday night, hours after the lawyers submitted a petition to the attorney general that complained about how courts were hearing cases, especially those against opposition politicians.

The petition said trials were mostly closed to observers and conducted in haste.

Suood said the same lawyers had earlier tried to bring these issues to the Supreme Court, but their document was rejected.