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Maldives govt hits out at oppn for calling for India’s military intervention

The Maldives government on Tuesday condemned calls by opposition leaders seeking military intervention by India to resolve the island nation’s political crisis that was triggered by President Abdulla Yameen’s refusal to implement a Supreme Court order.

Former president Mohamed Nasheed, currently in self-exile in Sri Lanka, and other opposition leaders have sought an Indian military intervention to end the turmoil.

A statement issued by the Maldives’ defence ministry said the government had noted “with concern that calls for and encouragement of Indian military intervention and military action” made by some Maldivians. It said the Indian media had reported on such calls and there had been speculation by some Indian politicians.

“The government of Maldives condemns all such action which constitutes a threat to the nation’s independence and national security. The government views such actions to be irresponsible and intended to cause the citizens of both nations, as well as other stakeholders, to cast doubt upon the excellent relationship India and Maldives have enjoyed for decades,” the statement said.

The Maldives government called “on all parties to refrain from such calls” and reiterated that it had maintained good relations with India since the country declared its independence. The statement added that the Maldives “firmly believes that India would not act on any such calls”.

The statement added that the Maldives government had not requested military intervention or assistance from any foreign country and there was no threat of the island nation “being invaded”.

Soon after the political crisis began after Yameen refused to implement the apex court’s order clearing Nasheed of terror charges and freeing eight imprisoned opposition leaders, reports had suggested that India had kept its troops in readiness for a possible intervention.

India also snubbed Yameen’s effort to send a special envoy to New Delhi, with officials saying that the Maldives government had not acted on the world community’s concerns about democratic institutions being undermined.

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