Legal Politics

China warns against outside intervention in Maldives, again

NEW DELHI: With former Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed continuing to seek military action by India, China on Monday warned yet again warned against intervention by any outside power saying that the current situation was the internal affairs of Maldives and should be properly resolved through “dialogue and negotiation by various parties in the country”.
“We believe the Maldivian government and people have the wisdom and ability to properly handle the problems they face and restore order in the country according to law,” said China in a statement. The statement, which significantly was issued by the Chinese embassy in New Delhi, was in response to Nasheed’s remarks accusing China of land grab in the Maldives.

In an exclusive interview to TOI last week, Nasheed had said that he would call for an international convention to deal with Chinese land grab. He also said China had acquired 17 islands in the archipelago.

The embassy accused Nasheed of having made those remarks for political purposes. Calling its cooperation with the Maldives practical, the embassy hit out at Nasheed for his “false” and “groundless” remarks accusing China of land grab in the archipelago.

According to Nasheed’s party Maldivian Democratic Party, most of Chinese investments and projects are marked by a lack of transparency and commercial loans which come at a concessional rate but which is offset by the inflated cost of projects.

That the Abdulla Yameen government has acted in a secretive manner in its commercial engagements with China was obvious most recently in the manner in which it rushed through the process of parliamentary approval for the China-Maldives free trade agreement.

Accusing Nasheed of pointing fingers at the “practical cooperation” between China and Maldives, the Chinese embassy statement said these allegations were “apparently groundless with no regard to facts”.

“In recent years, on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, China and the Maldives have been cooperating on infrastructure and livelihood projects, which has played a positive role in transforming and upgrading the latter’s economy and improving its people’s livelihood. They have been widely welcomed by the Maldivian people,” it said.

Recalling that “relevant cooperation projects” were launched by China and Maldives when Nasheed was the president, the statement said the “land grabbing” claim by Nasheed was “apparently” meant to serve certain political purposes for him.

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