While they were assembling there were lots of police and an anti-riot unit - they went into action immediately," Roger Mancienne, editor of the weekly opposition newspaper, Regar, told IRIN.
, who was among those detained by police, said: "The leaders of SNP were immediately apprehended - party officials were severely beaten and kept in custody in the hospital because of their wounds.
The editor of Regar, Roger Mancienne, who is also secretary-general of the opposition Seychelles National Party (SNP), told IRIN that the attack came "when the political climate is getting a bit tense" ahead of the presidential elections to be held before the first week of August 2006.
He claimed that the SNP and the newspaper had been targeted by the ruling Seychelles People's Progressive Front (SPPF) at its recent political rallies, after the weekly exposed an alleged corrupt property deal implicating a senior member of the SPPF.
"He [Mancienne] is a member of the opposition - these claims are expected of him," he told IRIN.
The fire damaged the press but the cooling system prevented it from spreading to the entire building.
A piece of cloth soaked in kerosene was found in the debris.
said the press will be operational soon.
has quite often been sued for libel by the government.
Since one-party rule was abolished in 1993, freedom of speech has improved in the islands, where government controls much of the media, including the only daily newspaper, radio and TV station.
argued that devaluing the currency would not necessarily lead to rising levels of imported inflation.
"Locally we are already paying high prices - at dollar terms the prices of goods here are very high ... compared to other countries [in the region].
maintained that devaluation "is the only way to stimulate the economy.
As long as business cannot get foreign exchange to maintain their investments and equipment etc ... we cannot move forward.
Government departments have also had to cope with foreign currency shortages, he
"Now our hospitals are short of medical supplies and critical equipment ... government departments themselves have to struggle to get forex - they are not succeeding; they are building up huge unpaid bills with suppliers overseas," Mancienne
noted that in terms of tourism, the Seychelles was losing its competitive advantage.
"Prices are ridiculous - we've milked tourism on that basis just too much.
There are enormous taxes on wines, and hotels place their own high charges on wines on top of that.
It's just a turn-off for the tourist.
The impression now, internationally, is that Seychelles is over-expensive and you're being ripped off.
Even the value of the rupee comes into play in this regard," he
added that the country has "fewer hotel beds now than four years ago ... the government has put a lot of emphasis on five-star developments with a limited number of rooms, which is where we've got it wrong.