New Delhi, December 25
The Maldives Police have arrested former State Minister for Finance and Customs Commissioner Abbas Adil Riza who, in a tweet, had encouraged an arson attack on the Indian High Commission in Male.
The arrest came on a day when his party colleague and former Maldives President Abdulla Yameen was sentenced to 11 years in prison by a court for corruption. The developments come ahead of the presidential elections in Maldives next year. Pro- China Yameen has in the past few days made several anti-India remarks.
The Maldives government has condemned Riza’s incitement of arson and terrorism targeted at the High Commission of India in Male. “The government strongly condemns the incitement of arson and terrorism targeted at the High Commission of India in Maldives. The government is investigating this threat very seriously and the authorities have taken all necessary precautionary measures,’’ said the official statement from the Maldives Ministry of Foreign Affairs. “The 8th February arson attacks in Addu were carried out on India’s order. We haven’t retaliated to that yet. I propose we start from the Indian High Commission,’’ Riza had tweeted.
Riza was referring to the 2012 torching of a police post in Addu. Political tempers are high in this southernmost atoll because of a proposed maritime base to be run by India. Under the “Uthuru Thilafalhu (UTF) agreement’’ signed last year with the Maldives, India will build and maintain a harbour and dockyard for 15 years. The opposition alleges that it will mean a military base for India in Maldives.
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