Anyone found to be responsible for human rights violations and undermining the rule of law in the Maldives will be banned from travelling to the European Union and will have their assets frozen.
The European Union announced its decision on July 16. It is a direct follow up to the European Councils’ February conclusions that called on Maldives President Abdulla Yameen’s government to engage with opposition leaders for credible and transparent elections.
“This decision makes it possible, if the situation does not improve, to impose a travel ban and an asset freeze on relevant individuals and entities,” the EU said in a statement, without identifying any targets.
As reported by the Reuters news agency, the government imposed a 45-day state of emergency to annul a Supreme Court ruling quashing the convictions of nine opposition leaders, including the first democratically elected leader, Mohamed Nasheed.
Nasheed, who was convicted of terrorism charges three years ago and sentenced to 13 years in prison, has withdrawn his candidacy in the presidential election after the national election commission ruled him ineligible to run.
Allowed to leave the Maldives on medical grounds in 2016, Nasheed was granted asylum in Britain and has lived in Sri Lanka since last year.