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Last Updated : Feb 12, 2018 09:43 PM IST | Source: PTI

Nasheed's 'land grab' allegation 'groundless', says China

A spokesperson from China said that in recent years, on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, China and Maldives have been cooperating on infrastructure and livelihood projects, which has played a "positive role" in transforming and upgrading the latter's economy and improving its people's livelihood.

The Chinese Embassy here today rejected former Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed's allegation of "land grab" in the strategically located Maldivian islands, dubbing it as "false and groundless".

Without naming China, Nasheed, who is currently in Colombo, had accused "a large, emerging power" of "land grab" in the island and buying up its sovereignty.

Spokesperson of the Chinese Embassy here Counselor Ji Rong issued a statement refuting Nasheed's remarks.

Recently, former Maldivian President Nasheed made a lot of "false remarks" in the Indian media, he said.

Nasheed "pointed fingers at the practical cooperation between China and Maldives and alleged that China engaged in so called 'land grabbing' of Maldivian islands, which undermines the security of the Indian Ocean region. These allegations are apparently groundless with no regard to facts," Ji said.

The spokesperson also said that in recent years, on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, China and Maldives have been cooperating on infrastructure and livelihood projects, which has played a "positive role" in transforming and upgrading the latter's economy and improving its people's livelihood.

"They have been widely welcomed by the Maldivian people. As a matter of fact, when Nasheed was the president, China and Maldives had already launched relevant cooperation projects. The 'land grabbing' allegation by Nasheed is apparently meant to serve certain political purposes of him," the statement said.

Nasheed, in his remarks, had said it was important to vote out President Abdulla Yameen as "a large, emerging power is busy buying up the Maldives. Buying up our islands, buying up our key infrastructure, and effectively buying up our sovereignty. This land grab is very worrying."

On the current political turmoil in Maldives, the Chinese Embassy spokesperson said China believes the current situation in Maldives is the internal matter of the country and should be properly resolved through dialogue and negotiation by various parties in the country.

"We believe the Maldivian government and people have the wisdom and ability to properly handle the problems they face and restore order in the country according to law," Ji said.

The island nation, which has seen several political crises since the ouster of Nasheed in 2012, plunged into chaos early this month when the apex court ordered the release of nine imprisoned opposition politicians, maintaining that their trials were "politically motivated and flawed".

India had earlier described as a matter of "concern" the arrests of the chief justice and political figures there.

However, earlier this week, the Supreme Court had revoked its order on the release of the opposition politicians.
First Published on Feb 12, 2018 09:23 pm
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