Maldives police raid office of critical news website over ‘coup’ plot

Police officers pictured outside Hulhugali house in Henveiru ward which also houses the office of Maldives Independent news website. MIHAARU PHOTO/MOHAMED SHARUHAAN

Police officers pictured outside Hulhugali house in Henveiru ward which houses the office of Maldives Independent news website. MIHAARU PHOTO/MOHAMED SHARUHAAN

Police on Wednesday raided the office of a news website critical of the present government allegedly over a plot to overthrow the government.

Police spokesperson confirmed that a warrant has been issued to search the entire building of Hulhugali house in Henveiru ward which also houses the office of Maldives Independent news website.

The court had sanctioned the warrant based on police intelligence received over a plan to oust incumbent president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom from office.

The raid comes days after the police searched the home of jailed former president Mohamed Nasheed.

But police later said the search had come up empty.

Coincidentally, the search of Maldives Independent office comes in the wake of a documentary released by Al Jazeera exposing mass corruption and abuse of power in the archipelago.

A screen grab of the Al Jazeera documentary ‘Stealing Paradise’ shows editor of the Maldives Independent news website Zaheena Rasheed during her interview with the Doh based broadcaster.

A screen grab of the Al Jazeera documentary ‘Stealing Paradise’ shows editor of the Maldives Independent news website Zaheena Rasheed during her interview with the Doh based broadcaster.

Created by the Emmy and BAFTA winning Al Jazeera’s Investigative Unit, the documentary titled ‘Stealing Paradise’ contains leaked documents, text messages and recorded confessions that has blown the lid off corruption, thuggery and international money laundering spearheaded by president Yameen himself.

Zaheena Rasheed, editor of Maldives Independent had provided interviews for the documentary and had reportedly aided in the making of the report.

Government spurned the documentary by insisting that the Doha based broadcaster had failed to provide any evidence to substantiate the allegations against president Yameen.

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