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Nasheed warrant

Colombo, Feb. 18 (AP): Maldives police today said they have asked for help from the foreign ministry in arresting former President Mohamed Nasheed, who has taken refuge inside the Indian embassy.

A court today issued a second arrest warrant for Nasheed to face charges that he illegally ordered the detention of a judge during the last days of his rule, police spokesperson Hasan Haneef said.

The detention led to Nasheed’s ouster from power last year.

Nasheed, the first democratically elected leader in the Indian Ocean archipelago, took refuge inside the Indian mission last Wednesday when the court issued an earlier arrest warrant against him for failing to appear to face the charges. Nasheed’s Maldivian Democratic Party has said his life is under threat.

The Indian government has said it will deal with Nasheed on a day-to-day basis.

The former President said the charges are politically motivated to disqualify him from running in a presidential election in September.

Party spokesperson Abdul Gaffoor said Nasheed was displeased with the judges selected for the hearing and that would face the court if he is given a fair trial.

Nasheed was elected President in 2008, ending a 30-year autocracy. He resigned last year after losing the support of the military and the police during weeks of public protests over the judge’s detention. His deputy, Mohammed Waheed Hassan, succeeded him.

An inquiry commission last year dismissed Nasheed’s claim that he was ousted in a coup.