Maldives ex-president urges fresh polls

2012-02-10 10:02

kalahari.com

Male - A UN special envoy arrived on Friday for talks with the new administration in the Maldives, as former president Mohamed Nasheed demanded fresh elections after being ousted in what he called a coup d'etat.

Assistant Secretary General Oscar Fernandez-Taranco reached the capital Male early on Friday and was to hold talks with new president Mohamed Waheed, who has won crucial backing from the United States.

Three weeks of opposition-led protests were capped on Tuesday by a police mutiny that led to Nasheed's dramatic resignation, which he said was "forced" when armed rebel officers threatened him with violence unless he stepped down.

Waheed promised in a new statement that his "key priorities included the restoration of public confidence in democratic institutions by upholding the rule of law and uncompromising adherence to the constitution".

The legitimacy of the new administration hinges on whether Nasheed is seen as having resigned of his own will or having been ousted by force.

When asked on Thursday whether Washington recognised the new government of the Indian Ocean island nation, which has been wracked by violence, US State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland replied: "We do."

Conspiracy

Nasheed, who became the Maldives' first democratically elected president in 2008, signalled that he intended to continue fighting, telling a meeting of his senior party workers that Waheed should resign.

"He must step down and then the speaker of the majlis [parliament] can hold elections within two months," he told thousands of cheering supporters late on Thursday who then dispersed peacefully.

Nasheed, a former pro-democracy activist and famed climate change activist, has accused of Waheed of being party to the conspiracy to overthrow him.

A local criminal court issued a warrant for Nasheed's arrest on Thursday, but following external pressure from foreign diplomatic missions Nasheed escaped detention.

Police spokesperson Abdul Mannan Yusuf said the force would be "tactical" about when they would use the warrant. "We can arrest him when we feel the need for it," he said.

Violence gripped the holiday paradise archipelago on Wednesday and Thursday, with demonstrators overrunning at least 18 police stations on outlying islands and torching government buildings.

No external solution

Friday is a public holiday in the Islamic state of 330 000 Sunni Muslims and most shops and offices remained closed with no overnight reports of fresh clashes.

The UN's Fernandez-Taranco had been invited by Nasheed when he was still in power to help end a standoff with opposition parties over the arrest and detention of a senior judge.

The envoy made it clear that he was not there to dictate how the political upheaval of recent days should be resolved.

"There can be no externally generated solution to something that can be solved by Maldivians themselves," Fernandez-Taranco said, adding that the UN was concerned for Nasheed's safety.

"I would personally urge all actors to end the resorting to violence," he told reporters at the airport.

The violence this week could be extremely damaging for a country which depends on tourism thanks to its crystal-clear turquoise waters, coral-fringed beaches and ultra-luxury resorts.

"The violence has tarnished our image, we have become just another Middle East country with violence on the streets," Mohamed Sim Ibrahim, the secretary general of the Maldives Association of Tourism Industry, complained on Thursday.

Read more on:    un  |  mohamed nasheed  |  mohamed waheed  |  maldives
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

20% off all TV Series!

Want to have a chilled day at home? Get 20% off TV series, the perfect excuse to "veg out". Shop now!

Save R700 on the Hisense LED TV Now R2499

Get the Hisense 32” HD ready LED TV for only R2499. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 40% off fashion accessories

Save up to 40% on selected handbags, purses, watches, jewellery and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R2000 on top electronics

Get every day mind bowing savings on top electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

As seen on TV - New book releases at only R199 each

Get mind blowing book savings on new titles. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Today is one of those days where the more positive and optimistic you are the more opportunities you seem to attract....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.