19 November 2014
MDP expresses grave concern over Maldivian Government’s systemic and systematic alienation and exclusion of itself
Last night, while addressing a rally organized by the youth of the Progressive Party of the Maldives (PPM), President Yameen Abdul Gayyoom stated that “Commonwealth has caused more damage to the Maldives than any other country or party”.
In his Republic Day address on 11th of November, President Abdulla Yameen blamed the EU of imposing trade restrictions on the Maldives for refusing to change or abandon Islamic principles. He further criticized “Western colonial powers” for anti-Islamic policies, suggesting that the Maldives was turning east toward China as a partner which does not involve such challenges.
The following day Economic Development Minister Mohamed Saeed and Fisheries Minister Dr. Mohamed Shainee have claimed The European Union (EU) demanded legalisation of same sex marriage and freedom of religion in return for extending duty-free status to Maldivian exports of canned tuna.
Instead of seeking to maintain a balanced network of bilateral ties, Foreign Minister Dunya Maumoon in her recent statements have worked to play one country against another.
While making the comments last night President Gayyoom referred to the decision by the Commonwealth in 2012 to suspend the country from the group while the legitimacy of the transfer of power was investigated as well as to continue monitoring the human rights situation in the country.
This government has also downgraded its mission in London indicating it has no interest in maintaining strong ties with the UK or the Commonwealth.
MDP is alarmed by the inward looking and xenophobic strategy of the government, making baseless accusations thereby attempting to exclude itself and cut ties with important partners.
MDP is extremely concerned that this approach of the government appears to be deliberate and is systemically and systematically alienating itself from the rest of the world to seek a safe haven to continue committing gross human rights violations, abuse and regress on what is left of the democracy in the country.
MDP continues to maintain that Maldives should work to solve global problems through multilateral institutions. Maintaining our independence and sovereignty should not become synonymous with living in isolation. We cannot afford to do this in an interdependent world. Especially when the backbone of our economy is dependent upon the hospitality industry we need to be progressive in our views, tolerant and diverse.
MDP strongly urges the current government to retune important bilateral and multilateral relations including those with our neighbors.