Indian and British journalists arrested in Maldives for working against ‘Immigration Act’
The Maldives government on Friday continued a clampdown on dissent that has sparked international concern with the arrest of two journalists.
The journalists employed with AFP news agency were arrested and handed over the Immigration department.
Two journalists (British national and an Indian national) have been handed over to @Immigration MV to take action against them for working in the Maldives against Immigration Act and Regulations,” said Maldives police on Twitter.
According to ANI , Money Sharma from Punjab’s Amritsar and Atish Ravji Patel from London, who are both AFP employees, have been arrested.
“We don’t have freedom of press anymore. Last night one of the leading TV stations was closed. We call for their immediate release and restoration of democracy and rule of law,” said Ali Zahir, Member of Maldives Parliament.
A pro-opposition television network in the Maldives was shut down following threats to its staff.
Raajje TV said threats to its employees over their reporting on the political crisis in the picturesque Indian Ocean archipelago had forced it to suspend broadcasts.
The Maldives was plunged into crisis this week when President Abdulla Yameen declared a state of emergency and ordered the arrest of judges who had ordered the release of his political opponents.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has urged Yameen to lift the state of emergency while UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein has described Yameen’s actions as “an all-out assault on democracy.”