By Naveen KapoorNew Delhi [India], July 23 (ANI): The Maldives has said that some elements from the previous regime are spreading hatred against the Indian mission in the island nation.
Foreign Minister of Maldives Abdullah Shahid in an interview with ANI said that these elements are in a minority, dissatisfied with the large projects with assistance from India underway in the country, and are doing it for their selfish political interest.
Foreign Minister and UNGA President elect Adbullah Shahid said, "We take the security of diplomats very seriously, the obligations of Vienna conventions is something we always take seriously. Appropriate measures have been taken by the government. Where are these coming from is the question we have to ask, through internet, through social media."The Foreign Minister further said that the previous government had no foreign policy, and the only policy they knew was to play one country against the other, his apparent reference being India and China.
He said, "It's difficult to control how people react to their dissatisfaction, but it is also clear that the former government had no foreign policy. The only policy they knew was to play one country against the other. You can see these elements are in a minority. These are few individuals who are dissatisfied with so many large projects underway with assistance from India and for selfish political reasons they are promoting such hatred."ANI had earlier reported that the Indian mission had taken up the issue of online hate attacks the High Commissioner and other staff members faced with the Maldivian foreign ministry.
The Foreign Minister of Maldives when asked how he compared the assistance provided by China and India, said that India has always been a first responder in the time of need.
He said, "India has always been a first responder to the Maldives in times of need and even during this crisis of covid pandemic India has been a first responder and if you look at the evacuation of Maldives students in Wuhan, India had brought students back. India sent doctors, and medical equipment's. India has provided budget support of 250 million dollars, India also provided vaccines within 48 hours of the national roll-out. India is so close to Maldives both geographically and in many other ways. It should not be compared to what other countries do for us but India has done for us we are celebrating it. We will continue to engage with all countries and that is the policy of the current government. We are friend to all, enemy to none."Speaking about Chinese debt, Abdullah said, "The previous government has taken a lot of development loans from China. The repayment was a challenge during covid, not just for small island nations but for many countries. It was becoming a challenge we have been able to talk to Chinese and other countries from whom we have borrowed, we are given room to pay."Former President of Maldives Mohamed Nasheed had recently raised the issue of Chinese loans restructuring, rising terrorism, and radicalisation.
Responding to it, the Foreign Minister said, "President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih's government is committed to fight against terrorism, it is a scourge which has no borders. We walk the talk on terrorism. We are working closely with our partners India, Sri Lanka, United States and many other countries to fight terrorism." (ANI)