Maldives Prez forced out, India keeping a watch

  • Jayanth Jacob & Agencies, Hindustan Times, New Delhi / Male
  • |
  • Updated: Feb 08, 2012 01:37 IST
  • Mohamed Nasheed

    File photo of Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed who resigned after weeks of demonstrations. Agencies

  • tear gas

    A Maldives soldier kicks a tear gas canister towards police during a clash in Male, Maldives. The first democratically elected president Mohamed Nasheed of Maldives ...

  • Maldives soldier

    A Maldives soldier fires a rubber bullet towards police during a clash between them in Male, Maldives. The first democratically elected president Mohamed Nasheed of ...

  • Maldives soldiers

    Maldives soldiers, left, are involved in a clash with police officers, right, in Male, Maldives. Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed presented his resignation in a nationally ...

  • Maldives police

    Maldives police officers assume taking an oath before joining a protest against the military in Male, Maldives. Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed announced his resignation today ...

  • Opposition supporters

    Opposition supporters stage a protest at the Republican Square in Male, Maldives. Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed announced his resignation today following weeks of public protests ...

  • Hassan Manik

    People gather outside a building in Male, as news breaks that mutinying police has taken over the state broadcaster, in this still image taken from ...

  • Republic Square

    In this handout photograph provided by Haveeru News Service, opposition activists celebrate at Republic Square following the news that a group of police officials have ...

  • Maldivian President

    In this handout photograph provided by Haveeru News Service, Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed (C, wearing white) walks towards the military headquarters after meeting special police ...

  • Maldivian police

    In this handout photograph provided by Haveeru News Service, mutinying Maldivian police are seen amid a cloud of tear gas as they confront the military ...

India is keeping a close watch on the situation in Maldives, where a police mutiny Tuesday led to the resignation of the country's first democratically elected president Mohamed Nasheed, capping several weeks of political unrest.


With a new unity government in place under the leadership of vice-president Mohamed Waheed Hassan, who worked with Unicef and is the country's first TV anchor, India feels that the "worst could be over" and the situation will stabilise.

"We remain committed to extending the fullest support and cooperation to the government of Maldives in its endeavour to promote peace and progress…," the ministry of external affairs spokesperson said in a statement.

Nasheed, who swept to victory in 2008 ending 30-year rule of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, said in a televised address, "I resign because I am not a person who wishes to rule with the use of power." Nasheed drew opposition fire for his arrest of a judge he accused of being in the pocket of Gayoom. 

Protests at the judge's arrest set off a constitutional crisis that had Nasheed defending himself against accusations of acting like a dictator. Hassan Saeed, leader of the DQP, one of the parties in the opposition coalition, and an Indian diplomatic source in Colombo said Nasheed had requested help from India and was refused, Reuters said.

One of the seven Saarc member countries, Maldives has a pivotal place in New Delhi's Indian Ocean and south Asia strategy. Its political leadership has shared close security ties with India.

A 30,000-strong Indian community lives in Maldives. "We continue to closely monitor the situation and understand that the Indian expatriate community there is safe," the spokesperson said.

 

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