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Commonwealth ministers to check Malidives

2012-02-12 21:51

London - The Commonwealth said on Sunday it would send a ministerial mission to the Maldives to investigate the circumstances of the ousting of president Mohamed Nasheed.

After an emergency telephone conference, it "agreed to constitute a ministerial mission which will visit Maldives urgently to ascertain the facts surrounding the transfer of power, and to promote adherence to Commonwealth values and principle", the Commonwealth Secretariat said in a statement.

Participants in the meeting, including foreign ministers from Australia, Bangladesh, Canada, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and Sierra Leone, also heard feedback from a Commonwealth Secretariat team already in the Maldives.

They "underlined the importance of adherence by member countries to the Commonwealth’s fundamental political values" including the rule of law, respect for human rights and constitutional democracy, the secretariat statement said.

"CMAG recognised the impressive gains made by Maldives in recent years in consolidating multi-party democracy, and expressed its solidarity with the people of Maldives to select a government of their choice through democratic means," it continued.

"CMAG stressed that the way forward must be determined by Maldivians themselves, through inclusive political dialogue in an atmosphere of non-violence, restraint and stability."