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China totally backs sovereignty of Maldives; ties set to attain new heights: President Muizzu

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Chinese President Xi Jinping and Maldivian President Mohamed Muizzu attend a welcome ceremony on the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China January 10, 2024.
| Photo Credit: REUTERS

Maldivian President Mohamed Muizzu has praised his nation’s strategic relationship with China, saying the 2 international locations respect one another and Beijing totally helps the Indian Ocean island’s sovereignty.

Mr. Muizzu’s feedback got here amid an unease within the Maldives’ bilateral ties with India after he took workplace in November final yr.

Mr. Muizzu, who returned to the Maldives on Saturday after a high-profile state go to to Beijing on the invitation of his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, famous that China has supplied help to the event of the Maldives since establishing diplomatic relations in 1972.

During his just-concluded go to to China, Mr. Muizzu, considered a pro-China chief, sought to align Maldives nearer to Beijing and each international locations elevated their ties to a strategic partnership.

He additionally stated China’s Belt and Road Initiative has taken bilateral relations to a brand new stage.

China isn’t a rustic that might intrude with the inner affairs of the Maldives, which is why the 2 international locations have a powerful relationship, Mr. Muizzu was quoted as saying in an interview with China’s state-run CGTN channel.

He added that the Maldives and China respect one another, and China totally helps Maldives’ sovereignty.

The President expressed his perception that the China-Maldives relations will proceed to develop stronger sooner or later, the official PSM News quoted him as saying within the interview.

He additionally stated his Chinese counterpart President Xi places the curiosity of residents first and that China’s financial system has reached new heights beneath his management.

He added President Xi has assured him that the Chinese authorities will assist the Maldives obtain its targets.

President Muizzu stated his imaginative and prescient includes strengthening the financial system of the Maldives and bringing progress in accordance with the expectations of the individuals.

He additionally stated he desires to remodel the Maldives into a rustic that works in concord with different developed international locations inside the framework of his imaginative and prescient.

His remarks got here amid a row between the Maldives and India over derogatory feedback posted by three Deputy Ministers of the Muizzu authorities in opposition to Prime Minister Narendra Modi resulting in a diplomatic row with India.

Mr. Muizzu suspended the three ministers after their social media postings, which stirred concern in India and requires a boycott by Indian vacationers who ranked highest in numbers adopted by Russia. Chinese vacationers figured third.

Mr. Muizzu has additionally requested India to withdraw its navy personnel from his nation by March 15.

According to the newest authorities figures, there are 88 Indian navy personnel stationed within the Maldives to assist function a Dornier plane and two helicopters supplied by India.

Speaking to the press on Saturday after getting back from China, President Muizzu not directly attacked India.

Without naming any nation, he stated, “We may be small, but that doesn’t give you the license to bully us.”

He also announced plans to reduce the country’s dependency on India, including securing imports of essential food commodities and medicine and consumables from other countries.

“We aren’t in anyone’s backyard. We are an independent and sovereign state,” he said, addressing the reporters gathered at the Velana International Airport.

He said that no country has the right to exert influence over the domestic affairs of a country, regardless of its size.

He vowed that he would not allow any external influence on the domestic affairs of the Maldives.

Male is also reviewing more than 100 bilateral agreements with New Delhi signed by the previous government here.

Meanwhile, the government of Maldives has issued a statement, firmly backing China on the of Taiwan.

China views Taiwan as a rebel province that must be reunified with the mainland, even by force.

The victory of Lai Ching-te in Saturday’s presidential election is considered a setback for China’s efforts to bring Taiwan under its control. His Democratic Progressive Party advocates maintaining the status quo on the issue of reunification.

“The Maldives is firmly dedicated to the one-China precept, which stays the bedrock of the Maldives relations with China,” the Foreign Ministry said in a press release.

The Maldives opposes “any assertion or motion that undermines China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, opposes all “Taiwan independence” separatist actions, and won’t develop any type of official relations with Taiwan,” according to the statement.

It added that the Maldives opposes “exterior interference in China’s inner affairs beneath any pretext and helps all efforts made by China to attain nationwide reunification.”

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