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Remand extended for Maldivians detained in Sri Lanka

The pair failed to pass a security clearance test.



Two Maldivians arrested in Sri Lanka in the aftermath of the Easter Sunday bombings last month have been remanded for seven more days after failing to pass a security clearance test.

The two men were arrested in Colombo on April 27 after police found literature in their house allegedly related to the Islamic State terror group.

A Sri Lankan court detained the pair for a further week after their initial remand expired on May 10, foreign ministry spokesman Miuvan Mohamed confirmed.

Local media reported that they were arrested after Sri Lankan police raided their residence. The owner of the apartment and a Maldivian who was in Colombo for medical purposes were arrested over a book called ‘Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS,’ a Pulitzer-winning work of nonfiction that was being used by a student researcher for his doctoral thesis.

According to Mihaaru, the two men failed to pass a security clearance to secure the release.

Thousands of Maldivian families reside in the neighbouring country.

Several Maldivians were also taken in for questioning for various reasons after the attacks. Five people are currently in custody, Miuvan told the Maldives Independent.

Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid travelled to Colombo last week and discussed recent visa restrictions with Prime Minister Ranil Wikremesinghe.