October 19, 2019
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    Suspect in Maldives boat blast arrested in Sri Lanka

    November 02, 2015

    One of the eight suspects wanted in connection to the explosion aboard the Maldivian presidential speedboat late September was arrested in Sri Lanka late Sunday.

    Ahmed Ashraf, known by his social media moniker of Shumba Gong, is a self-declared supporter of the embattled vice president Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor.

     

    His last tweet believed to be sent just before his arrest read "Some ppl smashed my doors trying to come in. May Allah protect us all!"

     

    Police confirmed the arrest but did not say when Ashraf would be repatriated by the Sri Lankan authorities.

     

    Maldivian authorities had on Sunday warned an international manhunt would be launched if the suspects did not return to the Maldives voluntarily.

     

    Home minister Umar Naseer who heads a national enquiry commission constituted by the president to investigate the blast had said the suspects were in neighbouring countries like Sri Lanka and Thailand.

     

    In addition to Ashraf, the other identified suspects are Mohamed Allam Latheef, Mohamed Hussein, Mohamed Visham, Mohamed Aseel Ahmed, Hussein Sinan and Ahmed Ishfah Ali.

     

    Vice President Adheeb was arrested last week over the blast aboard the presidential speedboat carrying the president in September.

     

    President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom and First Lady Fathimath Ibrahim were travelling to Male from the airport on September 28 when the explosion took place. They had returned home that morning after concluding their visit to Saudi Arabia to perform the annual hajj pilgrimage.

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