Maldives’ chief justice arrested after declaration of emergency

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Policemen arrest former Maldives president and opposition leader Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, center, after the government declared a 15-day state of emergency in Male, Maldives, early Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018. — AP
Policemen arrest former Maldives president and opposition leader Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, center, after the government declared a 15-day state of emergency in Male, Maldives, early Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018. — AP
The Maldives’ top judge was arrested Tuesday as security forces stormed the Supreme Court at dawn, in a deepening confrontation with President Abdulla Yameen who has declared a state of emergency in the troubled honeymoon islands.

The detention of Chief Justice Abdulla Saeed and another Supreme Court judge raised the stakes in a dramatic clash after Yameen refused to comply with an order to release nine political dissidents.

Police said both men were under investigation for corruption and that the court’s top administrator had also been detained.

Yameen has presided over an escalating crackdown on dissent that has battered the image of the upmarket holiday paradise, and left almost all the political opposition jailed since he came to power in 2013.

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