Maldives Impeaches VP

MALE, Maldives (AP) -- Maldives' Parliament voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to impeach the country's vice president, who is accused of plotting to kill the president.

Ahmed Adeeb is the second vice president to be impeached in three months. He has been arrested for allegedly planning to kill President Yameen Abdul Gayoom in an explosion on his speedboat on Sept. 28.

The impeachment motion received 61 votes in favor and none opposed in the 85-member Parliament. The main opposition group, the Maldivian Democratic Party, abstained.

The president declared a state of emergency on Wednesday, saying the explosion and subsequent discovery of arms posed a threat to national security.

Adeeb, 33, who was once Gayoom's trusted protege, became vice president in July after the impeachment of his predecessor, Mohamed Jameel, who had fallen out of the president's favor.

Lawmakers from Gayoom's party even changed the constitution to reduce the minimum age for presidents and vice presidents from 35 to 30 to enable Adeeb to take office.

However, suspicion immediately fell on Adeeb after the explosion on Gayoom's boat, and he was arrested at the airport as he returned from an official visit to China.

Gayoom was unhurt by the blast, which the government called an assassination attempt. The U.S. FBI, which investigated the explosion, said it found no evidence that it was caused by a bomb.