Lanka wants peaceful end to Maldives issue

Sri Lanka has called for a peaceful end to the issue in the Maldives after protests led to the resignation of former President Mohamed Nasheed.

The Sri Lankan External Affairs Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that the developments are internal matters of the Maldives and hopes that all issues pertaining to this transition be resolved in a peaceful manner.

Sri Lanka also said that it had noted the resignation of the President of the Maldives Mohamed Nasheed and the swearing in of its Vice-President, Dr. Mohamed Waheed as the President of the Maldives.

“As the closest neighbor, Sri Lanka enjoys a cordial relationship with the government and people of the Maldives, and wishes to assure its fullest support and co-operation to the Government of the Maldives in its efforts to bring peace and stability to the country and prosperity to the Maldivian people,” the External Affairs Ministry said.

The New Maldives President called for calm after he took office on Tuesday and also promised to take the country forward.

Nasheed was forced to relinquish power on Tuesday following days of protests over his decision to sack the criminal court judge Abdullah Mohamed.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon voiced hope on Tuesday that the resignation of the President of the Maldives and the appointment of his deputy as the new leader will help to peacefully end the ongoing political crisis in the Indian Ocean country.

Ban called on all Maldivians to “refrain from violence and engage constructively” in tackling the challenges facing the country, adding that he hoped the Maldives will be able to build on “the important gains” it has recently made in establishing democracy and the rule of law.

Later this week Assistant Secretary-General Oscar Fernandez-Taranco will lead a United Nations political mission to the Maldives to help the country deal with its recent tensions.