China calls for Maldives to “maintain national stability and social development”

China has called for “national stability and social development” to be maintained in the Maldives, in a rare official statement on the country from its Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“The presidential election is the internal affairs of the Maldives. China respects the choice of the Maldivian people and hopes all relevant parties could settle the disputes properly through friendly negotiations. The Chinese side believes that the Maldivian government and people have the wisdom and capacity to resolve relevant issues,” read the statement.

“As a friendly neighbour of the Maldives, China is closely observing the developments in the Maldives and sincerely wishes that national stability and social development can be maintained,” the statement added.

While India has historically been the Maldives’ strongest regional ally, relations have been strained between the two governments partly due to the consistently poor treatment of expatriate Indian workers, and the government’s extra-contractual expropriation of the Maldives’ single largest foreign investment, GMR’s renovation of Male airport.

This has led some overseas observers to speculate that China may seek to increase its own diplomatic efforts in the country, after it recently opened an embassy in the capital Male.

China is also now the single largest tourism market for the Maldives, responsible for almost a quarter of all tourism arrivals as of 2011.

Recent protests and political turmoil over the delayed, cancelled and obstructed elections have been extensively covered by Chinese state media, Xinhua.

A Chinese travel advisory, updated on September 27, noted that while the Maldivian social order “is generally stable”, “partisan conflicts around the presidential elections are intensifying.”

The Chinese Embassy in the Maldives urged Chinese visitors to monitor the local security situation, contact and confirm the hotel booking before departure, and avoid non-essential travel to Male’.

Friday’s protests were also extensively reported by Chinese state-run press agency, Xinhua.

The Chinese statement follows those from the Commonwealth, UK, EU, India, US, UN, Canada and Australia expressing concern over the delayed presidential election and calling for free, fair and inclusive polls.

“The international community has been watching developments in the Maldives with concern ever since the Supreme Court annulled the first round of Presidential Elections on October 7,” read the latest statement from the Australian government, noting the rescheduling of polls for November 9.

“The first round of Presidential Elections on 7 September was judged free and fair by international and domestic observers. Following the annulment, a new first round of Presidential elections was scheduled to be held on 19 October but did not proceed. The Election Commission has now announced that elections will be held on 9 November.

“It is imperative that the elections now be held as scheduled with no further delays. Maldives voters have engaged actively and in good faith with the electoral process and this commitment needs to be honoured,” the statement read.

“As a fellow Indian Ocean country and Commonwealth member Australia stresses the importance of abiding by democratic values and processes, good governance and strong resilient institutions. Australia looks to all state bodies and presidential candidates in the Maldives to work together collaboratively to ensure that the election can take place in a manner that is free, fair and inclusive,” it concluded.

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10 thoughts on “China calls for Maldives to “maintain national stability and social development””

  1. What would the Chinese know about elections and democracy?.....its like the blind leading the blind.
    Why don't you tell your new friends in Beijing to practice what they preach?
    Indian workers unfortunate enough to be stranded in the Maldives should ensure their passports are with them at all times.....and not with some Mafiosi employer.

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  2. Commentators here are getting ahead of themselves. China never mentioned democracy or elections! These are alien concepts to the Chinese.

    What they did mention was national stability and social development. The Chinese do rather well on the first point of that. But that "national stability" in China is at the cost of fundamental human rights.

    Anyway, it's interesting to note that the Chinese even bothered to issue a statement. It's a sign of their ever growing wings.

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  3. China knows much better than Indian? China is far more developed than India
    China is much more respectable and much more influential in international community than India.

    China does not want to invade Maldives where as India does.

    China is much more responsible than India and china does not treat people like slaves like India .

    This is why we need to listen to China and not India.

    India thought by stopping the export of construction material to Maldives, our development will stop? But it does not and we are continuing with that.

    Even Maldives is far more developed than India.

    We have 100% literacy where as in india it 60% is illiterate.

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  4. @MissIndia NewDelhi
    ooooooh look who's back. the very annoying person from India who has no business except pokehis/her/it's nose into every damn little affair of this country. Aaaaah, the life of Miss India NewDelhi :@)

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  5. @MissIndia NewDelhi
    India is a police state. India and its 'encounter lists' does not say much for democratic principles.

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  6. @hero

    All countries have their short comings and they also have skeletons in the cupboard. However, to say that China is more this more, more that, better than India is to talk, or write in your case without much criteria. Put it this way, it shows lack of arguments. Have you ever been to China and see their stone age poverty, while they have the ultra modern Shanghai? Have you heard or read about India's Mathematical heritage, while at the same time there are many Indians without electricity? What about Maldives's history, have read and learned from it?

    Economic growth is not equal to more personal and social development. Both, China and India have space programmes and they have millions literally living in the stone age. Is that where you look for inspiration? The bosses of both, China and India are very corrupted, a bit like the ones you have in Maldives.

    I suggest to look more at countries like Iceland, which has roughly the same population as Maldives. They became bankrupt 5 years ago. However, Icelanders are very hard working and very well educated. Iceland has one of the most socially developed countries in the entire well. It is worth learning about their history, their tolerance and their approach to life. Corruption is not rampant and now, after 5 years of their economic collapse they have an unemployment rate of under 5%.

    You need a National Public Library in the Maldives urgently.

    Wishing you a fair election once a for all.

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  7. Ladies and Gentlemen:
    There is no point nor reason to try to argue about who is better, bigger, has more of this or that, or any such. In fact, come to think of it, no one country can claim to be perfect, or claim to be holier than thou! Every country has its issues and problems.

    And in this case, neither China nor India are the subjects of this discussion or are at the eye of the storm (pun intended).

    If we want to really participate in this discussion, let's try to contribute some' positive and help the situation here.

    Having said that, Maldives is in deep trouble right now. The peoples of Maldives are the ones on the receiving end the most at this time. These People are being dealt with in the most unfair and hopeless political situation. This critical situation has been created and fanned by none other than their own power hungry and dictatorial political mafia, for their own means, regardless of their own local laws, their constitution, or moral ethics!

    Now the local people, the peoples of Maldives are helpless under the situation and under the current police controlled state.

    It's high time the UN steps in and puts some much needed and long overdue political law and order in place in this beautiful country of Maldives.

    Thus far, there has been only just talk from the US, UK, EU, India, Australia, and even China for good measure . . .

    As we all know talk is cheap and we need to act soon, before it is too late in Maldives.

    It is most appropriate for the UN to step in now quick with a decent size peace keeping force and ensure elections are held and carried out as the constitution of the country. Is this not the mandate of the UN? What is the UN waiting for - for the problem to blow up?

    However, strategically, historically, and logistically speaking as well, India is the one country that should have already been there in Male' to sort things out. Any one single state of India is larger and more populated that the whole nation of Maldives. Now why is India shying away from their democratic moral obligation and responsibility, particularly with their key position in the area, close proximity to Maldives, and most importantly with India's long and involved history and relationship with Maldives?

    Is it because of India's own current volatile political situation?
    Or is it because of their recent taste of Vietnam in Sri Lanka, not so long ago?
    Or is it because they just don't care?
    What was the point anyway, however, for the good doctor to try to rope in China to join in the support of India and other concerned well wishers of Maldives to help stabilize the political situation in that country?
    And China of course did not miss the opportunity to snub India on that request . . .

    The people of Maldives deserve a fair political environment, and a fair chance to vote, like anyone else anywhere in a democracy. Under the current police controlled situation, these people can do precious little themselves.

    Well, in my humble opinion, it is between the UN and India to act now, act quick, and act decisively to avoid the political chaos from escalating any further in Maldives.

    It is their rightful responsibility, and moral political obligation to make things right in the once peaceful country of Maldives.

    I hope they do . . .
    I truly do . . .

    Good luck to you Maldives!

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