President Abdulla Yameen left the Maldives for Singapore on an unannounced visit on Tuesday, just a day after his deputy left the country on an official visit to Malaysia.
The president’s office declined to comment on Yameen’s departure.
Ibrahim Muaz Ali, the president’s spokesman, said: “The president’s office will reveal information regarding his trips if it finds it fit.”
He refused to comment on when Yameen is expected back, but said Vice President Abdulla Jihad will return later on Thursday.
The president’s unannounced visit comes amid renewed tension in Malé. The embattled leader, who is facing domestic and international pressure over corruption allegations and human rights abuses, is also engaged in a power struggle with his half-brother former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom for the control of the ruling Progressive Party of the Maldives.
Gayoom is also reported to be in Singapore.
Since the feud between the Gayoom brothers broke out into the open, several lawmakers have defied Yameen’s orders in crucial parliamentary votes. However, Yameen has managed to command enough support to push through several controversial laws, including a widely condemned bill re-criminalising defamation.
Jihad is in Malaysia to take par in the International Conference on Blue Ocean Strategy, a summit that focuses on streamlining public services.
He is reported to have held discussions with Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, a close ally of Yameen.