Published: Sat, February 24, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

India 'distorting facts' on emergency extension, claims crisis-hit Maldives

India 'distorting facts' on emergency extension, claims crisis-hit Maldives

The statement issued by Maldives Foreign Ministry appealed all friendly nations, including India, to "refrain from any actions that could hinder resolving the situation facing the country".

Hours after the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) of India said that it does not see any valid reason for extending the emergency period in the Maldives, the Island nation claimed that India is ignoring the facts and ground realities with regard to the ongoing political developments.

On Thursday, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said: "It is our honest desire to see that the democracy in Maldives is restored".

Parliament approved on Tuesday the extension sought by president Abdulla Yameen, but it was passed without the constitutionally required quorum of 43 lawmakers.

"We are dismayed that the Maldives government has extended emergency for a further period of 30 days", the MEA spokesperson said.

He also urged Maldives government to release the Chief Justice and a Supreme Court judge, political prisoners, and restore democracy.

Earlier, the Joint Opposition led by former President Mohamed Nasheed's Maldivian Democratic Party wrote to Guterres asking him to mediate between them and the government and to oversee any talks held.

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"It is underscored in the statement that all elections after the ratification of the Constitution were accepted to be fair and free by all parties, and that the Government recommends all political parties and politicians alike to work towards making the upcoming elections free and fair, rather than engage in a battle to topple the Government and to destabilize the nation, " the statement from Maldives also read.

On 5 February 2018, the President declared the State of Emergency under the powers vested in him in Article 253 of the Constitution, pertaining to a Constitutional Crisis, and an imminent threat to national security, upon the advice of the National Security Council.

New Delhi has expressed concern about the situation in the honeymoon islands, whose president has sacked top judges, jailed political dissidents and imposed a state of emergency in recent weeks.

Maldives government has begun preparations for Presidential elections later this year even as police crackdown on opposition members continue during an emergency.

The court said his 2015 trial had been unconstitutional.

However, Maldives has dismissed the global community's concerns, saying that "public statements are unhelpful".

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