UN calls for "transparency" in Maldives arrest

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Stéphane Dujarric. UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

The UN has urged for fairness and transparency in regards to the legal proceedings against the former Maldives President.

Mohamed Nasheed, now the leader of the opposition, was seized on Sunday.

Media reports say he is facing charges of terrorism.

Jocelyne Sambira has more.

Pictures of Mohamed Nasheed being pushed on the ground and dragged by police offers in the city of Malé have appeared on several international media outlets.

He was the first President of the Maldives to be elected through a ballot in 2008.

However, in 2012, he was forced to step down following weeks of protests for ordering the detention of a judge on corruption charges. 

UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric says the UN is aware of the arrest and is closely monitoring the situation.

"During a telephone conversation earlier this morning initiated by the Foreign Minister of Maldives, Dunya Maumoon, the Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Jens Toyberg-Frandzen, stressed the need for full respect for due process and transparency of the legal proceedings against former President Nasheed. Mr. Toyberg-Frandzen also appealed to the Government of Maldives to allow for peaceful political dissent and for ways to seek to engage with the opposition, in the interest of long-term political stability in that country."

The Maldives is a small country of almost 2000 islands spread across the Indian Ocean.

It has been undergoing democratic transition only since 2008 and has faced challenges in consolidating democratic institutions and culture.

Duration: 1'23''

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