Masked Men Torch Maldives TV Station

An attack on a TV station supporting the leading candidate for the presidency of the Maldives has been caught on CCTV just hours before results from the first round vote were annulled. The Supreme Court scrapped the results from the September 7 poll after the outcome was challenged by a candidate who said there were irregularities in the process, including votes being cast by underage voters and fake identity cards being used. Former President Mohamed Nasheed led the first round with more than 45% of the vote but failed to get the 50% needed to win without a runoff. Yaamin Abdul Gayoom, the brother of the country's longtime autocratic leader Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, finished second and was to face Mr Nasheed in the second round scheduled for September 28. The run-off had been expected to help end months of political turmoil triggered by the removal of Mr Nasheed, who was ousted from power 20 months ago amid a mutiny by police. The television station in the capital Male came under attack just hours before the court's decision, when masked men started a fire which gutted the building.

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