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Customs says ‘no more security checks’ for Maldivians in Sri Lanka

Customs says ‘no more security checks’ for Maldivians in Sri Lanka

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan authorities have stopped the extra security checks on Maldivians travelling to Colombo, Maldives customs said Sunday.

Customs in a statement said its chief Mohamed Junaid had met with his Sri Lankan counterpart and the Sri Lankan finance minister over the tightened security measures at Sri Lanka’s Bandaranaike International Airport for Maldivians.

The extra security checks had been conducted as Maldivians were suspected of bringing in goods for trade as baggage without the necessary clearance, the statement said.

Customs said the security checks for Maldivians would now be lowered to normal standards.

However, customs quoted Sri Lankan authorities as urging Maldivians not to take food items more than for personal use when travelling to Sri Lanka.

Maldivians who travelled from the Emirates Airline flight on Saturday afternoon had been held back at the airport for hours during the security check.

The claims of special security check comes after the murder of a Maldivian in Sri Lanka early this month.

Razeen, who is a notorious former gangster, was found dead with stab injuries in an abandoned paddy field near the Tumbovila Bridge in Piliyandala on November 5. Two suspects — a Maldivian and his Sri Lankan accomplice — have been taken into custody.

Sri Lankan authorities had said the thousands of Maldivians residing in Sri Lanka would be subject to closer scrutiny following the killing.