Maldives Parliament speaker hurt in blast outside home

FM Qureshi condemns attack on Nasheed, who is currently receiving treatment at hospital


Reuters May 07, 2021
Maldives former President Mohamed Nasheed and his wife Laila Ali Abdulla, leave a private apartment in Sri Lanka to return in their country, after living in exile between London and Colombo for over two and a half years, Colombo, Sri Lanka November 1, 2018. PHOTO: REUTERS

The speaker of parliament in Maldives, former President Mohamed Nasheed, was injured in a blast outside his family home on Thursday, police said in a statement.

"Following an explosion... Speaker of Parliament President Mohamed Nasheed has sustained injuries and is currently receiving treatment at ADK Hospital," the statement said.

A spokesperson for Nasheed's governing Maldivian Democratic Party told Reuters he had suffered shrapnel injuries in the attack, adding that his condition was stable.

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih said an investigation into the explosion was under way.

Images from state TV channel PSM showed security services securing the scene of the incident in the capital Male. A foreign tourist was also injured, the channel reported.

"Strongly condemn the attack on Speaker of Parliament, President Mohamed Nasheed this evening," Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid said in a tweet.

"Cowardly attacks like these have no place in our society. My thoughts and prayers are with President Nasheed and others injured in this attack, as well as their families."

Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi also condemned the attack on Nasheed.

“Strongly condemn the attack on Speaker of the Maldives Parliament Mohamed Nasheed this evening, Our thoughts and prayers are with Speaker Nasheed and we wish him and all others injured in the attack a speedy recovery,” the foreign minister said on Twitter.

Nasheed, who became Maldives' first democratically-elected president in 2008, has remained an influential figure since leaving office in 2012. He is president of the governing party and, after a period in exile, has served as parliament speaker since 2019.

While no group has claimed responsibility for the blast, the archipelago has been known in the past for political unrest and Islamist militant violence.

In 2015, former president Abdulla Yameen escaped unharmed after an explosion on his speedboat, while a 2007 blast blamed on Islamist militants targeted foreign tourists and injured 12 people.

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