The Maldives Police Service said that it had arrested up to 200 people from 16–18 March during anti-government protests in the capital, Malé.
The 16 March protests involved arson, with at least one vehicle set on fire outside the office of local telecoms firm Dhiraagu, and protesters briefly held a police officer hostage near Lily Magu street. The protest involved thousands of people, and was the largest since 1 May 2015 when former president and main opposition leader Mohamed Nasheed was sentenced to 13 years’ imprisonment. Nasheed came to power in November 2008 following the 30-year rule of incumbent President Abdulla Yameen’s half-brother Maumoon Gayoom, and claimed that he was forced to resign by armed police in February 2012.
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