Maldives opposition beats Yameen in a huge upset

Sep 24, 2018, 7:25 AM EDT
The Maldives' outgoing President Abdulla Yameen has drawn flak for his authoritarian regime.

Maldives’ opposition leader Ibrahim Mohamed Solih bagged a surprise presidential win on Monday, defeating incumbent Abdulla Yameen, whose five-year tenure drew global flak for his authoritarian policies and crackdown on dissent.

The defeat for the Beijing-backed leader in the Maldives deals a blow to China, which has been growing its influence in the archipelago with investment projects eventually aimed at expanding its military reach in the region, writes Reuters.

India hailed the “triumph of democratic forces” in the Maldives, which has been plagued by political upheaval in the recent past after Yameen declared a state of emergency and ordered the arrest of two judges, who had scrapped the convictions of opposition leaders, notes the BBC.