Saudi prince’s Maldives visit makes global headlines

The visit of Saudi Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz continues to make headlines today after the UK’s Daily Mail newspaper reported that the prince had booked out Anantara’s three South Malé atoll resorts for nearly one month.

Headlines in Saudi Arabia have suggested that Prince Salman – due to arrive tomorrow – will discuss potential investments and partnerships in energy, tourism, transport, and Islamic affairs, as well the provision of a soft loan facility of US$300 million for the Indian Ocean nation.

“The crown prince’s trip to the Maldives comes in response to the invitation extended by Maldivian President Abdullah Yameen Abdul Gayoom,” Maldivian ambassador to Saudia Arabia Adam Hassan told Arab News.

Anantara’s Dhigu, Naladhu, and Veli resorts – all within an hour’s boat ride from the capital Malé – were said to have been reserved for the 78 year old heir to the Saudi throne.

The Daily Mail has reported the comments of “furious” tourists who had reservations cancelled without forewarning or apology.

Staff at Anantara were unable to provide any further information when contacted by Minivan News today. Similarly, spokesman at the President’s Office was unavailable for comment.

Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministry reported last week  that that prince’s official visit to the Maldives came on the invitation of President Abdulla Yameen and would form part of an Asian tour taking in India, Pakistan, and Japan. The President’s Office confirmed the visit but declined to provide further details.

The visit comes amid growing ties between the Yameen administration and the Saudi kingdom. Vice President Dr Mohamed Jameel Ahmed visited Saudi Arabia earlier this month, meeting with the Imaam of the Grand Mosque of Makkah.

The vice president stressed the importance the government placed on enhancing ties with the Arab world and in strengthening religious unity in the Maldives. Shortly after Jameel’s return, the government initiated its pledge to introduce Arabic lessons in schools as part of a drive to increase Islamic learning in the country.

After being invited by the Maldives Islamic Minister Dr Mohamed Shaheem Ali Saeed, the Saudi Arabian Muslim Scholars Association in January agreed to provide a grant of MVR1.6 million to assist in the provision of Islamic education in the Maldives.

Jameel’s trip followed the January visit of Defence Minister Mohamed Nazim, during which time an MoU was signed regarding the increase of air traffic between the Maldives and Saudi Arabia.

Prince Salman is currently in Japan and was today awarded an honorary doctorate from Tokyo’s Waseda University.


11 thoughts on “Saudi prince’s Maldives visit makes global headlines”

  1. Global headlines??? I check a lot of news sites from various countries and not even in the margin there is any mention of this. And why would it be mentioned anywhere else in the world anyway?

  2. Let the good times roll at Anantara. I'm sure it will be a month filled with Quran study and prayer. I would love to be a fly on the wall for this Saudi holiday.

  3. It's not love of Islam or Arabs that's driving people like Jameel. It's the smell of money! The Arabs aren't stupid either and they know that very well.

    You might get a few more kilos of free dates from the Saudis, but that's about it. It's shameful to beg the Saudi's for money to pay for lazy buggers who sit in air-conditioned offices doing sod all.

    Prince Salman won't give you a $300 million dollar loan. Think about this. They are basically trying to finance their lifestyle for the next five years at a rate of $60 million dollars per year. Who ends up paying for this? It's the Maldivian citizens.

    Remember Gayyoom's palace? At $60 million dollars, they are going to divide the loot between the loyalists, buy luxuries for themselves. C'mon this is so stupid that the Saudis will be rightly upset for even asking them for the money.

  4. The Saudi royals are not coming to Maldives on official visit...but a month long luxury holiday with their millions of petroleum dollars and with dozens of Ukrainian Models...they're not trying to spread righteousness on earth...

  5. The desert camel herders are just looting the poor Bedouin in the name of Guardian of Allah. The fact is, this money does not belong to this crazy so called prince, why Allah allows this self proclaimed prince to loot the Arab desert salves of Allah. These barbarian never want their ignorant people to come out from the darkness of Islam as enlighten people will never allow such people to loot their money to live in the paradise on earth keeping them to die for a mythical paradise after they parish as salves of Allah.

    On the othehand the so called Musilm brothers of Maalu Dhivehi are ready to worship this looter of their brethren in the Arab dessert so the prince of Allah could lend some of his loot to our Dhivehin. May be Mullah Group believe they also have some rights on the money from Arab desert for being the salves of Allah, but the sad thing is these Arabs never treat their fellow poor believers as their brothers and never help the poor Muslims around the world. These princes spend the looted money on white blondes and night Clubs in Europe what a crazy Ummah.

  6. Saudi will grant this loan facilities knowing that the the dictator Nasheed is no longer a player in the Maldives politics.

    Nasheed hidden agenda was exposed to Saudi and his Denmark speech is well received by Saudi too.

    Nasheed will never be accepted by Saudi and his recent trip to Saudi was false claim .

    Nasheed even did not go Umrah as he said and he fabricated the story and took some photos for social media.

    I guess for Nasheed and his thugs these things will be very hard to digest and Yameen had done and achieved much better in 100 days compared with what Nasheed had done during his first 100 days.

  7. cos of Saudi royals the management of Anantara has violated their employee rights...they cannot go out of island, no day offs for a month cannot use mobile phones...anywhere on the resort.

  8. So pleased you have royal visitors from Saudi Arabia.
    Now don't go and upset your visitors by telling them fictional stories of your Arab ancestry and the fact that your forefathers rode camels in the desert.

  9. Anni's agenda was to free Maldives from Arab imperialism and oil slavery. That's why the Saudis financed the coup.

    Simple as that. These Saudis have the blood of muslims from Maldives, Palestine, Syria, Nigeria, Somalia and Pakistan on their hands - why should we bow our heads to such devils?


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