SA: New president must stabilise Maldives
Johannesburg - South Africa expressed the hope on Tuesday that the newly-appointed Maldives president Mohamed Waheed Hassan would bring peace and stability to the island nation.
"The newly-appointed president has assured that the rule of law will be maintained in the Maldives," international relations and co-operation spokesperson Clayson Monyela said in a statement.
"The South African government has taken note of the call by the government of Maldives on the people to remain calm and to support the efforts of the government to stabilise the situation following demonstrations and random acts of violence."
Monyela said the department had not received any reports about South African tourists in Maldives who were "in distress".
Hassan, who previously served as vice president, was sworn in following the resignation of president Mohamed Nasheed on February 7.
United States-based news agency The Associated Press reported last week that protests against Nasheed broke out after a senior judge was arrested by the government on charges of political bias.
Nasheed resigned when police and army soldiers joined the protests against his rule.
Hassan's government insists that Nasheed stepped down voluntarily, and although police have issued an arrest warrant against the former leader, there has been no move to arrest him.
Nasheed later described his ouster as a coup d'tat.