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Lakshadweep Vs Maldives row intensifies further as Male leader calls for no-confidence vote against President


Maldives President Mohamed Muizzu
Image Source : AP Maldives President Mohamed Muizzu

India-Maldives tensions: The situation for Maldives President Mohamed Muizzu might go out of the hands amid diplomatic tensions with India as Parliamentary Minority Leader, Ali Azim, on Monday, pushed to oust the newly appointed President through a no-confidence vote in the Parliament. Azim underscored that the move is crucial to uphold the stability of the nation’s foreign policy and to prevent the isolation of neighbouring countries.

“We, the Democrats, r dedicated to upholding the stability of the nation’s foreign policy and preventing the isolation of any neighbouring country. R u willing to take all necessary steps to remove prez @MMuizzu from power? Is @MDPSecretariat prepared to initiate a vote of no confidence?” (sic) he said in a post on X.

Maldives ministers’ contentious remarks 

Notably, the tension between India and Maldives rose after Mariyam Shiuna, Deputy Minister of Youth Empowerment, Information and Arts, commented on the photos of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent visit to Lakshadweep. She dubbed PM Modi as a ‘clown’ and a ‘puppet of Israel’. “What a clown. The puppet of Israel Mr Narendra diver with a life jacket #VisitMaldives,” Shiuna tweeted.  Her critical comments came as India has maintained good relations with Israel even though the country has been engaged in the ongoing war against Hamas. India, however, since the start of the conflict has helped Palestine, sending humanitarian aid and has actively advocated two-state solutions. Ignoring the fact, the minister called Prime Minister Modi a “puppet of Israel”. Later, several other ministers followed suit.

In fact, several of the ministers even claimed that Indian beaches could not meet the cleanliness level of the Maldives beaches. “The move is great. However, the idea of competing with us is delusional. How can they provide the service we offer? How can they be so clean? The permanent smell in the rooms will be the biggest downfall,” Zahid Rameez, a Council member of the ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) wrote on X. 

India-Maldives diplomatic tensions

This triggered a major uproar in the diplomatic arena, wherein the Maldivian side had to release a “clarification” statement. The archipelago nation emphasised that the minister’s remarks did not represent the view of the incumbent government and subsequently suspended three of the ministers who denounced the visit of PM Modi. “The Government of Maldives is aware of derogatory remarks on social media platforms against foreign leaders and high-ranking individuals. These opinions are personal and do not represent the views of the Government of Maldives…Moreover, the relevant authorities of the Government will not hesitate to take action against those who make such derogatory remarks,” according to the statement. 

 A day after the suspension, India called the Maldives envoy in New Delhi and discussed the matter. 

Muizzu could discuss the matter with China

It is worth mentioning ever since pro-China President Mohamed Muizzu after his surprise victory in September’s presidential election, the relations between New Delhi and Male posied a new low. In fact, he ordered to withdrawal of Indian military presence from the island nation– in an attempt to woo Beijing. Now, the critical comments against the PM would deteriorate the relations further.

Muizzu, who is currently, on a visit to Beijing, is scheduled to meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on Tuesday. Although it was not immediately clear whether the Chinese leaned President would discuss the ongoing development with Xi, it was speculated that the duo could discuss the matter.

Also Read: Maldives govt suspends three ministers amid massive backlash over derogatory remarks against PM Modi


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