Mohamed Nasheed, exiled former president of the Maldives, has abandoned his bid for the presidency in the nation’s upcoming election (AP). Nasheed won 43,922 of 44,011 votes cast in the primary, campaigning from Sri Lanka, where he lives in exile (Reuters). However, the Elections Commission refused to accept the results, citing Nasheed’s conviction on terrorism charges in 2015 (Reuters). Nasheed’s party, the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), has unanimously chosen its chief lawmaker, Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, as Nasheed’s replacement in the election (Xinhua).
A police mutiny forced Nasheed to resign in 2012, sentencing him to 13 years in prison after a trial widely criticized by rights groups (Reuters). Since taking over for Nasheed in 2013, the current Maldivian president Abdulla Yameen has cracked down on political dissent (Dhaka Tribune). In the run-up to the election, Yameen reportedly jailed all his main rivals and expected to run unopposed (Gulf Times). Despite losing the nomination, Nasheed tweeted his “heartfelt congratulations to the joint opposition parties who today agreed to field a common presidential ticket” (Gulf Times).
Tags: elections, Maldives, Suvannasankha