Official says Maldives president escapes unhurt from speedboat blast on return from Haj trip

A government minister says Maldives President Yameen Abdul Gayoom has escaped unhurt from a blast in his speedboat as he returned to the country after preforming Haj in Saudi Arabia.

Minister Mohamed Shareef says the blast occurred Monday morning as the boat reached the main jetty in the capital of Male. Gayoom's wife Fathimath Ibrahim and several other officials suffered minor injuries.

Shareef says the blast may have happened in the engine but it is too early comment on the cause, though boat accidents are common in the Indian Ocean archipelago state.