Maldives opposition forms shadow govt. in London; seeks help from India

  1. Context: A new multi-party opposition platform was launched in London that pledged to lead the fight for the restoration of democracy in the Maldives
  2. Maldives United Opposition: Former Vice-President of the Maldives, now living in exile in the United Kingdom, Dr. Mohamed Jameel Ahmed will head the Shadow Cabinet of the newly formed opposition
  3. Mr. Nasheed: The first democratically elected leader of the Maldives who was recently given political asylum in the UK, chose to take a back seat in the Shadow Cabinet with the post of Advisor
  4. India: One of the first tasks of the new party would be to formally seek recognition and assistance for their cause from India
  5. China: The Maldivian opposition has been critical of the growing economic footprint of China in the Maldives
  6. Opposition believes that Mr. Yameen has encouraged China to counter India’s influence in the Indian Ocean region

U.K. grants refugee status to Nasheed

  1. Refuge: The former Maldives President Mohamad Nasheed has been granted refugee status by the United Kingdom
  2. Background: Nasheed was the first democratically elected head of state of Maldives
  3. He was convicted and jailed in the Maldives in 2015 after a trial
  4. The trial attracted international criticism, including from the United Nations Group on Arbitrary Detention
  5. Let go: He was allowed to travel to London for medical treatment by the Govt of President Abdulla Yameen in January 2016

Maldives thanks India for support

  1. News: Abdullah Yameen has thanked India for “protecting” Maldives from possible punitive actions from the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG)
  2. Reason: In Nov 2015, Yameen declared national emergency ahead of a big wave of protests against his political opponents
  3. CMAG had been asking Maldives to move towards genuine democracy

India may sign pact against terror with the Maldives-

  1. Context: Maldives President Abdullah Yameen’s forthcoming visit to India
  2. News: A crucial counter-terror pact is likely to be among the list of agreements between the two countries
  3. Reason: Maldives has been seeking regional support to deal with extremism as 40 of its citizens are fighting for IS
  4. Both sides are also working on an agreement on double taxation avoidance in the field of international air transport

Democracy suspended in the Maldives

President Abdulla Yameen declared a state of emergency in the Maldives citing danger to the lives of the citizens and threat to national security.

  1. The emergency measures effectively snatches away the freedoms that followed the August 2008 Constitution.
  2. The Emergency was imposed to pre-empt a mass rally by the main Opposition Maldivian Democratic Party, which could have negatively impacted the law and order situation.
  3. Critics point that the emergency is one of the tool in the hands of the Maldivian govt. to crack down on political opponents.

India-Maldives ties at a peak: envoy

The India-Maldives relationship has been restored to a comfortable plane after several months of tensions.

  1. The governments are also ready to sign a Mutual Legal Assistance treaty (MLAT).
  2. India’s objective was to create a more harmonious Maldives.

India, Maldives to step up cooperation in defence, security

Both countries decided to ramp up cooperation in various fields including defence, security, energy and health.

  1. MoUs on cooperation between Foreign Service Institutes of both countries and for cooperation sports and youth affairs.
  2. Maldives has supported India for a permanent member of a reformed and expanded UN Security Council.

Maldives assures India of keeping the Indian Ocean a demilitarized zone

The assurance comes in the backdrop of Maldivian Parliament’s approval to allow foreign ownership of its islands.

  1. The obvious beneficiary of this move will be China which can acquire islands and atolls in the Maldives.
  2. It will also give a huge boost to the Chinese Maritime Silk Road initiative.

Maldives’ political crisis

  1. March ’15 – Former president Mohamed Nasheed is jailed for 13 years after being found guilty on terrorism charges.
  2. Nasheed is the country’s first democratically elected president after 30 years of autocracy.
  3. The verdict, which his party says is politically motivated, elicits international concern from governments and rights groups.
  4. With Nasheed’s (more pro-India than the Yameen government) arrest, India risks having the Maldives slip out of its strategic area of influence entirely.

:( We are working on most probable questions. Do check back this section.

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