The 2011–2012 Maldives political crisis began as a series of peaceful protests that broke out in the Maldives on 1 May 2011. They would continue, eventually escalating into the resignation of President Mohamed Nasheed in disputed circumstances in February 2012. Demonstrators were protesting what they considered the government's mismanagement of the economy and were calling for the ouster of President Mohamed Nasheed. The main political opposition party in the country, the Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (Maldivian People's Party) led by the former president of the country Maumoon Abdul Gayoom (who was in power for over 30 years under an authoritarian system) accused President Nasheed of "talking about democracy but not putting it into practice." The protests occurred during the Arab Spring.
The primary cause for the protests was rising commodity prices and a poor economic situation in the country.
The protests led to a resignation of President Mohamed Nasheed on 7 February 2012, and the Vice President Mohammed Waheed Hassan Manik was sworn as the new president of Maldives. Nasheed stated the following day that he was forced out of office at gunpoint, while Waheed supporters maintained that the transfer of power was voluntary and constitutional. A later British Commonwealth meeting concluded that it could not "determine conclusively the constitutionality of the resignation of President Nasheed", but called for an international investigation. The Maldives' National Commission of Inquiry, appointed to investigate the matter, found that there was no evidence to support Nasheed's version of events.
In April 2012, it was announced that new elections were to be held in July 2013; they eventually took place later in 2013.
|2011–2012 Maldives political crisis|
|Date||May 2011 – March 2012 (with ongoing unrest and counter-protests)|
|Caused by||Economic recession, low wages, Rising islamist ideology|
|Methods||Peaceful protests, civil disobedience|
|Resulted in||Resignation of President Mohammed Nasheed|
|Parties to the civil conflict|
Following nearly 30 years of rule by then-President Maumoon Gayoom, marked by allegations of autocratic rule, human rights abuses and corruption, violent protests in 2004 and 2005 led to a series of major reforms to the Maldives. The protests were organized by president Mohamed Nasheed and his party. Internal and international pressure forced then-President Gayoom to legalize political parties and improve the democratic process. Multi-party, multi-candidate elections were held on 9 October 2008, with 5 candidates running against Gayoom. A 28 October runoff election between Gayoom and Nasheed resulted in a 54-percent majority for Nasheed and his vice-president candidate Mohammed Waheed. A former journalist and political prisoner, Nasheed was a staunch critic of the Gayoom regime. In a speech prior to handing over power to his successor on 11 November 2008, Gayoom said: "I deeply regret any actions on my part ... (that) led to unfair treatment, difficulty or injustice for any Maldivian." At the time, Nasheed was detained and imprisoned several times since the age of 20, for heavy criticisms against Gayoom's administration and its officials in relation with election fraud and high-profile corruption. Nasheed was tortured and treated inhumanely in detention. Gayoom was the longest serving leader of any Asian country, serving for 30 years.
Mohamed Nasheed was elected president in 2008, becoming the first president to be elected by a multi-party democracy in the Maldives, and Dr. Waheed was the first elected Vice President in the Maldives. Their election victory ended the 30-year dictatorship of President Gayoom. Nasheed and the new government implemented many reforms in the country. In 2009, President Nasheed was awarded the Anna Lindh Award for bringing democracy to the Maldives. He has received many awards and international recognition for his role in bringing democracy to the country.
Despite major political reforms, however, the Maldivian economy continued to suffer. Many factors have created for a poor economic situation in the Maldives, including the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami, which devastated the Maldivian economy and caused serious damage on most of the islands of the Maldives. The 2007–2008 world food price crisis caused major rise in inflation, especially on food prices and the late-2000s recession created a tough economic situation in developing nations. There were improvements in the economy, however, as the Maldives was rated up in 2011 from being considered "least developed country". Furthermore, Nasheed faced issues during mid-2010, when Parliament members began resigning en masse.
The Arab Spring broke out across the Arab world and had worldwide influence, including in the Maldives, which shares historic, cultural, regional and religious connections to the Middle Eastern countries facing protests. A GlobalPost article says that many in the international community consider Mohammed Nasheed the "Godfather of the Arab Spring" for his role in bringing democracy to the Maldives and the peaceful protests which led to his election as president.
On 23 December 2011, the opposition held a mass symposium with as many as 20,000 people in the name of protecting Islam, which they believed Nasheed's government was unable to maintain in the country. The mass event became the foundation of a campaign that brought about social unrest within the capital city.
On 16 January 2012, the Maldives military, on orders from the interior ministry, arrested Judge Abdulla Mohamed, the chief justice of the Maldives Criminal Court, on charges he was blocking the prosecution of corruption and human rights cases against allies of former President Gayoom.
Weeks of protests and demonstrations ensued, led by local police dissidents who opposed Nasheed’s 16 January arrest order against Chief Justice Abdulla Mohamed.
On 7 February, Nasheed ordered the police and army to subdue the anti-government protesters. Police came out to protest against the government instead.
President Mohamed Nasheed resigned the same day by letter, and followed that with a televised public address. Nasheed later stated that he was forced to resign at gunpoint through a police mutiny and coup led by President Waheed. There have been disputes over exactly what happened that day. Nasheed's vice president, Mohammed Waheed Hassan, was sworn in the same day as President in accordance with the Constitution at the People's Majlis in front of the Chief Justice. Waheed had opposed the arrest order and supported the opposition that forced Mohamed Nasheed to resign, but despite allegations he denied involvement in the coup.
Nasheed resigned on 7 February 2012 following weeks of protests after he ordered the military to arrest Abdulla Mohamed, the Chief Justice of the Criminal Court, on 16 January. Maldives police joined the protesters after refusing to use force on them and took over the state-owned television station forcibly switching the broadcast opposition party leader Maumoon Abdul Gayoom's call for people to come out to protest. The Maldives Army then clashed with police and other protesters who were with the police. All this time no one of the protester tried to invade any security facility including headquarters of MNDF. The Chief Justice was released from detention after Nasheed resigned from his post.
Vice President Mohammed Waheed Hassan Manik was sworn as the new president of Maldives. Former President Nasheed's supporters clashed with the security personnel during a rally on 12 July 2012, seeking ouster of President Waheed.
Nasheed notoriously ordered very little use of force against the protests throughout most of the demonstrations. However, it was during his three years as president that the most frequent use of tear gas on public occurred. It was claimed that he ordered the police and security forces to use force against the protests in late January too as the protests were reaching escalating. It is claimed that police mutinied as a result of this.
Following the coup, the new government reacted very harshly to the counter-protests. Amnesty International has been very critical of the coup-implanted government's use of force. There have been many injured, many arrested, and at least one death committed by the post-coup government's security reactions to the counter-protests.
The first protests occurred on 1 May 2011, with thousands gathering in the capital Malé. Protests continued the following day with thousands gathering in the capital and reported clashes with police and protesters. On 3 May, over 2,000 demonstrators clashed with Maldivian security forces in Male. Riot police reportedly used tear gas to disperse the protesters. Protests again broke out again on 4 May. Police used force to break up demonstrators and eyewitnesses say that police arrested a senior opposition activist. On May fifth, protesters began their protests at Artificial Beach. In the fifth night of demonstrations Parliamentarian and DRP youth Council President Mr.Ahmed Mahloof, Maldives national football team forward Assad Ali and several others was arrested.
An opposition alliance (Madhanee Ithihaad) was formed on December 2011, including all the parties that supported the President in his 2008 presidential race. Those parties included the Gaumee Party, the Jumhoory Party, and the Adhaalath Party (Islamist party). On 23 December, the capital city saw major opposition protests against Nasheed and his government. Former cabinet minister Mohamed Jameel Ahmed was repeatedly summoned to the police station in connection with the protests, at one point being detained at Dhoonidhoo, a Maldivian prison island.
On 23 December 2011, the opposition held a mass symposium with as many as 20,000 people in the name of protecting Islam, which they believed Nasheed's government was unable to maintain in the country. The mass event became the foundation of a campaign that brought about social unrest within the capital city of Male.
On 16 January 2012, the Maldives military, on orders from President Nasheed, arrested Judge Abdulla Mohamed, the chief justice of the Maldives Criminal Court, on charges he was blocking the prosecution of corruption and human rights cases against allies of former President Gayoom. The opposition claims that the arrest was unconstitutional.
The arrest of Judge Mohamed was the ignition for further protests. Due to the arrest of the judge the opposition parties' protests gained momentum and demanded Judge Abdulla Mohamed's immediate release. During the detention of the judge, the HRCM was able to visit him in his place of detention, a military training base, and confirm his safety. Opposition leaders also called for an independent investigation into the constitutionality of the arrest, a call echoed by the Human Rights Commission of the Maldives, the Judicial Services Commission, the Prosecutor General’s Office, the International Commission of Jurists, Amnesty International, and the United Nations Human Rights Commissioner. Military and police rejected the orders by High Court to release the Abdulla Mohamed.
The opposition's protest in the Republic Square lasted for 22 days. On 6 February 2012, the Maldives Police Service declined to use force to control or disperse the protests and joined the protest.
There was an escalation in the protests and some protesters attacked the opposition-linked VTV television station. The police began a mutiny in late January. On 7 February, the protests reached their climax, with the military firing tear gas at demonstrators and police who were swarming the National Defence Force headquarters. In early hours of 7 February 2012, President Mohamed Nasheed was seen inside the military headquarters. The Maldives National Defense Force subsequently had a standoff with police who had joined the protesters, in which the MDF fired rubber bullets into the crowd. (The President's office, however, denied these reports.) On 7 February, Nasheed ordered the police and army to subdue the anti-government protesters and use force against the public. Police came out to protest against unlawful orders given to them. Amid the chaos the President resigned in front of the media after submitting a hand written resignation letter to the Majlis, as stipulated in the constitution. Following the forced resignation on 7 February 2012, Nasheed immediately informed the international community of the events surrounding his ousting and asked for early elections to preserve the country's fledgling democratic system.
President Nasheed was claimed to have resigned stating that he wanted to stop the violence. Nasheed and his supporters called it a coup d'etat (Nasheed claims he was forced out virtually at gunpoint, though this remains disputed). Nasheed's vice president, Mohammed Waheed Hassan, was sworn in as president to replace Nasheed at the Peoples majlis in front of the Chief Justice.
On 23 February 2012, the Commonwealth suspended the Maldives from its democracy and human rights watchdog while the ousting was being investigated, and backed Nasheed's call for elections before the end of 2012.
Counter protests broke out following the coup, in favor of ousted Nasheed. The protesters demonstrated against the coup and in favor of Nasheed. Supporters of Nasheed's political party, the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), led massive demonstrations.
On 8 February, the MDP convened an emergency executive meeting and called for its members to go into streets. President Mohamed Nasheed then attempted to lead the protesters to the Republic Square. Before his march reached the square, however, the Maldives Police Service dispersed the protest with batons and pepper spray.
Amnesty International has raised concerns of human rights abuses during this round of protests. Amnesty claims that there was excessive use of force by security forces against the protesters backing Nasheed, including sexual harassment of female prisoners. An Amnesty International spokesperson condemned the police tactics as "brutal" and "outright human rights violations".
On 14 April, parliamentary by-election were held, the first since the protests began, with Mohammed Waheed's party winning.
Mohamed Musthafa, an MDP candidate and former Member of Parliament, said that he refused to accept the result of the by-election, claiming that there were "major issues in Guraidhoo" and other issues (Guraidhoo is an island which reportedly registered abnormally high voter turn-out in the by-elections).
Nasheed and his supporters maintained that he was ousted in a coup, but this claim was disputed by Hassan's supporters, the National Commission of Inquiry, and the governments of the US, UK, India, and the Commonwealth of Nations.
Nasheed, in an interview with The Hindu after he was ousted, claimed that there was a plotted coup. He said: "I was given a seven-page letter by the General then in charge of military intelligence warning of a plot, to overthrow my government, by Maumoon Abdul Gayoom. However, the officer concerned was promptly replaced [by the Army]." As for why he resigned, Nasheed said: “I knew this was going to end either with many deaths or with my being lynched. So I agreed to resign.” He said it was "shocking" how hastily the governments of India and the US "stepped in to recognise the new regime – the coup."
Nasheed and his foreign minister, Ahmed Naseem, claimed in interviews that Islamic extremists were upset with his rule and were behind the coup. The conservative-minded US think-tank the Heritage Foundation raised concerns that the coup was to put Waheed into power in an effort to "strengthening of the military’s role in politics" and to create a fundamentalist Islamist government. Nasheed also claimed that wealthy resort owners were behind the coup. Nasheed had worked to amend the tax code so that wealthy resort owners paid more taxes. Nasheed said: "The coup was largely financed by resort owners" and that "I suppose they [the resort owners] liked the old order of corruption." The World Socialist Web Site, the online news center of the International Committee of the Fourth International claimed that the coup was backed by the United States and that United States and Indian envoys intervened in the crisis to back the coup.
The coup interpretation was also backed by UK MP David Amess, Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group to the Maldives, but contradicted by UK Prime Minister David Cameron, who asserted that Nasheed "had resigned". Nasheed's successor and opposition forces also stated that the transfer of power was voluntary. A later British Commonwealth meeting concluded that it could not "determine conclusively the constitutionality of the resignation of President Nasheed", but called for an international investigation. The Maldives' National Commission of Inquiry, appointed to investigate the matter, found that there was no evidence to support Nasheed's version of events. The US State Department and the Commonwealth of Nations Secretary Kamalesh Sharma welcomed the release of the report, and called on Maldivians to abide by its findings.
Presidential elections were held in the Maldives under a two-round system. The result of the initial vote held on 7 September 2013 was annulled by the Supreme Court and the election was re-run on 9 November. As no candidate achieved majority support, a run-off election (delayed by Supreme Court decree) was held on 16 November. Abdulla Yameen was elected President.
Following 7 September initial vote no candidate received a majority of the vote, and a second round was planned for 28 September, to be contested by former President Mohamed Nasheed and Abdulla Yameen – incumbent President Mohammed Waheed Hassan came fourth in the first round of voting. However, on 27 September the Supreme Court cancelled the run-off and annulled the first round results. A re-run of the first round was held on 9 November, producing a similar result to the annulled election, and the run-off was planned for the following day due to the need to have a new President in place by 11 November. However, the run-off was postponed to 16 November by the Supreme Court after Yameen claimed he needed more time to campaign. Yameen won the run-off with his share of the vote rising from 30% in the first round to 51% in the second round; in comparison Nasheed's share increased by only 2% between rounds.Nasheed was contesting the election following his controversial resignation amidst the 2011–12 Maldives political crisis with the aim of returning to the presidency after what he maintains was a coup d'état orchestrated by his deputy and successor Mohammed Waheed Hassan. Hassan contested the initial elections, but dropped out of the re-run after receiving only 5% of the vote. Yameen, paternal half-brother of former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom was the candidate from Gayoom's party, the Progressive Party.2018 Maldives political crisis
A political crisis in the Maldives intensified on after President Abdulla Yameen decided to disobey the Supreme Court order to release 9 political prisoners and reinstating 12 parliament members which will give the opposition control of the chamber and potentially paving the way for Yameen's impeachment.On 5 February 2018 president Abdulla Yameen declared a state of emergency and ordered the arrest of two judges of the Supreme Court of the Maldives, including Chief Justice of the Maldives Abdulla Saeed and justice Ali Hameed Mohamed and former President (also his half-brother) Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.2018 Maldivian presidential election
Presidential elections were held in the Maldives on 23 September 2018. Incumbent president Abdulla Yameen of the Progressive Party of Maldives was seeking re-election for a second five-year term. His only challenger was Ibrahim Mohamed Solih of the Maldivian Democratic Party, who was nominated as the joint candidate of a coalition of opposition parties.
The result was a surprise victory for Solih, who received over 58% of the vote and was elected as the seventh President of the Maldives. He assumed office on 17 November 2018. Solih is the country's third democratically-elected president since Mohamed Nasheed's victory over Maumoon Abdul Gayoom in the 2008 elections which ended a 30-year incumbency.
Yameen is the fourth consecutive Maldivian president to have at some point lost a bid for re-election. Namely, Yameen himself came to office by defeating former president Mohamed Nasheed, who was running for a second non-consecutive term in 2013, after having resigned in 2012 during the 2011–12 Maldives political crisis. Nasheed's successor in office, his Vice President Mohammed Waheed Hassan also sought re-election in 2013, but decided not to contest the re-run after the initial election was annulled. Finally, Nasheed had been elected in the 2008 election by defeating long-term incumbent Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.Abdulla Yameen
Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom (Dhivehi: އަބްދުﷲ ޔާމީން އަބްދުލް ގައްޔޫމް Arabic: عَبْدُ ٱللّٰه يَمِين عَبْدُ ٱلْقَيُوم; born 21 May 1959) is a Maldivian politician who was the 6th President of the Maldives from 2013 to 2018. He left office on 17 November 2018 following his defeat in the 2018 presidential election, in which he sought to win a second 5-year term.Yameen was elected president in the 2013 presidential election as the candidate of the Progressive Party (PPM), defeating Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) leader and former president Mohamed Nasheed in the second round of the re-run, after the initial election was annulled. He is the second democratically elected president of the Republic of the Maldives. He was later charged with corruption after he left office.Chief Justice of the Maldives
The Chief Justice of the Maldives is the most influential member of the judicial branch of the Maldives. He is appointed by the President of the Maldives.
He is a member of parliamentary committee and one member of the five supreme court justice . He over looks on cases in supreme court and handle national crisis, one good example 2011–12 Maldives political crisis, and protest in Maldives between 2015 and 2016 which left more than 1000 people injured. He is third in line of succession for presidency.
There has only been one Chief Justice in the Maldives Honorable Uz Abdulla Saeed and he was appointed as a justice of Supreme Court of the Maldives, which was brought into being by the Constitution in 2008, and assumed office as Chief justice of the Maldives, pursuant to Article 285 (b) of the Constitution, from 18 September 2008 to 10 August 2010. At the helm of the judiciary he inspired and guided efforts to reform and re organize the judiciary with the objective of building a responsive and efficient Judiciary system, capable of upholding the rule of law and citizens’ rights without compromising the function of dispensing justice. He introduced wide-ranging reforms and innovative measures to improve the administration of justice and the service provided to the citizens by the judiciary. He assumed office as a justice of Supreme Court from 10 August 2010 to 14 December 2014. He was appointed as Chief Justice of the Maldives on 14 December 2014.List of revolutions and rebellions
This is a list of revolutions and rebellions.Maldives political crisis
Maldives political crisis may refer to:
2011–12 Maldives political crisis
2018 Maldives political crisis