Maldives crisis: Former president Mohamed Nasheed seeks refuge in Indian embassy
Male: Former president of the Maldives, Mohamed Nasheed, has sought refuge at the Indian Embassy in Male and, sources said, India has agreed to give him shelter there.
Mr Nasheed said, “Mindful of my security and the stability of the Indian Ocean, I have taken refuge at the Indian High Commission in Maldives.”
A Maldivian court has issued a warrant against the former president and has ordered the police to arrest him. Mr Nasheed is expected to remain inside the Indian Embassy till his petition that the arrest order be stayed is heard by a higher court. The Maldivian police cannot arrest him inside the embassy as that it is Indian territory.
The former president has six of his MPs with him at the Indian embassy. As he holds talks with Indian officials inside, anti-riot police have surrounded the building and set up barricades.
The court issued the arrest warrant after Mr Nasheed failed to attend a previously scheduled trial hearing on February 10. The former President was on a visit to India after being granted permission to depart the country by the court. Despite the travel period he was allowed expiring on February 9, Mr Nasheed arrived back in Male only on February 11, Maldivian media reported.
Mr Nasheed is charged with abusing his power as president after winning the first free elections in the country in 2008. Mr Nasheed was forced out of power in February last year in what he has described as a coup orchestrated by former ruler Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.