A bomb explosion injured former President of the Maldives and current Speaker of Parliament, Mohamed Nasheed, on Thursday, officials and local residents said.

The 53-year-old democracy pioneer was about to get into his car in the congested capital when one of them A bomb attached to a motorcycle exploded.

“Nasheed escaped an assassination attempt,” a Maldivian government official told AFP over the phone. “He is injured, but his condition is stable.”

The Indian Ocean nation of 330,000 Sunni Muslims is known for its regular political turmoil and luxurious resorts.

Police have confirmed that Nasheed has suffered injuries had but did not provide details. They said he was being treated at ADK Hospital in Male.

Officials said the Maldivian parliament, which was on recess, convened an emergency meeting after the attack.

The explosion came just before a nightly one Curfew should come into effect in the capital to curb the spread of the coronavirus. The archipelago of 26 atolls is fighting an increase in infections that focus on men.

“They put him under anesthesia. One of his arms has a deeper cut,” the family member told AFP on condition of anonymity.

He said Nasheed was available and spoke to doctors when he was admitted with splinter injuries. One of his bodyguards was also taken to hospital.

Nasheed is a former Amnesty International prisoner of conscience who became the country’s first democratically elected president in the first multi-party elections in 2008.

He was overthrown in a 2012 coup and sentenced to 13 years in prison in 2015 on terrorism charges classified as politically motivated by civil rights groups.

President Abdulla Yameen let him go for medical treatment and Nasheed went into exile in the UK but returned home in 2018. </ Under Yameen's government, Nasheed spoke out against heavy borrowing from China and accused the former strongman of pledging the island paradise to Beijing for infrastructure projects.

“Cowardly attacks like this have no place in our society. My thoughts and prayers are with President Nasheed and others involved in this attack iff have been injured and their families. “

” Wish him a speedy recovery. You know he will never be intimidated, “Jaishankar said on Twitter.

(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and published from a syndicated feed.)

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