Maldives' ex-president Nasheed sentenced to 13 years in prison

Mohamed Nasheed gestures at a political march around the island in Male, October 18, 2013.  REUTERS/Dinuka Liyanawatte

Mohamed Nasheed gestures at a political march around the island in Male, October 18, 2013.

Credit Score: Reuters/Dinuka Liyanawatte


(Reuters) – Former Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed was sentenced to 13 years in jail on Friday after being found responsible of terrorism for ordering the arrest of a Choose when he was once in power in 2012.

The Decision is the most recent chapter in three turbulent years by which Nasheed, the Indian Ocean archipelago’s first democratically elected chief, used to be ousted in disputed situations, then narrowly defeated in a controversial election, after which, ultimate month, cleared over the incident for which he has now been convicted.

“The prosecution’s proof proved beyond cheap doubt that Nasheed ordered the executive Choose’s arrest or forceful abduction and detention on Girifushi island,” Judge Abdulla Didi said in the court docket within the capital, Male.

The three-Decide bench’s verdict was once unanimous, and the office of President Abdulla Yameen, who had denied that the prosecution used to be political, established the Thirteen-yr sentence.

Nasheed’s election in 2008 ended the autocratic 30-year rule of Yameen’s half-brother, Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.

The announcement last month that Nasheed had been arrested on terrorism fees brought thousands onto the streets of the capital Male, resulting in clashes with security forces. International Locations including India and the us have expressed situation about Nasheed’s therapy and trial.

The U.S. State Department mentioned in a observation on Friday it was once “in particular stricken by using reports that the trial was once carried out in a manner opposite to Maldivian legislation and Maldives’ international responsibilities.”

PROTESTERS DISPERSE

Tensions had been rising again as The Decision approached and a whole bunch of Nasheed’s supporters, some waving “Free Nasheed” posters, had gathered outdoor the court on Friday night time.

Police said that they had in brief detained 13 men close to the court docket. A Reuters witness outside the court mentioned the crowds had dispersed after the sentencing.

In a observation in court docket, Nasheed entreated his supporters to come out onto the streets in protest, in keeping with a Text launched via his place of work.

“I appeal to all of you nowadays to stay courageous and powerful, to confront the dictatorial power of this regime, to alter this govt and work toward forming a govt that will pave the way for the folks’s building and prosperity,” he said, in line with the Text, released after his sentencing.

The arrest of the Choose in 2012 brought on a problem by which Nasheed has mentioned he was once pressured to resign at gunpoint. His allies say he used to be ousted in a coup.

Yameen then become president in November 2013 in an election whose 2d-round runoff used to be canceled when early results put Nasheed beforehand. When the 2d spherical used to be re-run, Nasheed lost via a slender margin and conceded defeat.

The prosecutor-basic ultimate month withdrew felony costs that had been brought towards Nasheed over the Decide’s arrest, most effective to issue an arrest warrant shortly afterwards on new charges of terrorism on the subject of the same incident, bringing hundreds out onto the streets in protest.

The Maldives is a string of more than 1,A Hundred coral islands well-liked as a vacation paradise.

(Writing by means of Tommy Wilkes; Editing by Alison Williams, Kevin Liffey and Eric Beech)

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