Diplomacy Politics

Delicate and sensitive: Maldives seeks to reassure international community again

The state of emergency was a last resort to ensure national security and to safeguard the peace and stability of the Maldives, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, even as the government was being criticised at home and abroad for extending it by a further 30 days.

It was initially declared after a landmark ruling from the Supreme Court that ordered the release of prisoners, who are also President Abdulla Yameen’s opponents.

Yameen said there was an attempt to overthrow his government and that the only way to investigate it was by imposing a state of emergency.

The government maintains there is no threat to foreign nationals or tourists in the Maldives and that everyday life is largely unaffected.

“During this difficult time in the history of the nation, the government also wishes to extend an invitation to all its partners to clarify facts and policies prior to reaching assessments pertaining to these very serious security issues, complicated constitutional problems and sensitive internal differences,” said the foreign ministry on Tuesday.

“It is important for friends and partners in the international community to stand with the government and the people of the Maldives, and to refrain from any actions that could escalate an already delicate situation and derail the efforts being made to bring back normalcy.”

Earlier this month the government said the international community was welcome to visit the Maldives. Three European ambassadors subsequently went to Malé, where they were unable to meet members of the government including Yameen.

One member of the unlucky delegation, German ambassador Jorn Rohde, expressed his concern about the state of emergency’s extension.

“Last night’s 30 day SoE extension has again no legal basis. Govt. does not have the votes in parliament,” he tweeted.

There has been widespread condemnation of Yameen’s administration and the country’s vital tourism industry has taken a beating as holidaymakers stay away.

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Source URL:  Maldives Independent

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