Rejecting India's move: Maldives moving closer to China

Cancellation of India Study

The party of pro-Chinese president Mohamed Muisu has won a landslide victory in the Maldives parliamentary elections. Muisu's People's National Congress (PNC) party won more than two-thirds of the 93 seats in parliament on Sunday, the Election Commission announced, citing preliminary counting results. The President's pro-China foreign policy was demonstrated. This brings the country closer to Beijing, but at the same time it is the final rejection of a long-standing pro-India trend.

It determined national politics for many years. The pro-India Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) earlier had a comfortable majority in the popular representation, but according to preliminary results it has now won only 15 of the 93 seats, a clear defeat. In response, voters supported the president's move toward closer economic and military ties with China.

According to preliminary figures from the Election Commission, the pro-Chinese PNC is poised to win 70 of the 93 seats. This was a significant increase, as the President's party had only eight seats in the outgoing parliament. With this the PNC suddenly seized power in Parliament. This could be confirmed a week before the expected final election results.

Reuters

Maldivian President Muay Thai with Xi Jinping during a state visit to Beijing in January

Withdrawal of Indian players

The new political trend started last year: In September, pro-Chinese President Mui Su won against pro-India former President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih with his campaign slogan “India Out” and pledged to end the presence of around 75 Indian military personnel. Island State.

In March, India started withdrawing its soldiers. These were earlier deployed in the Maldives to patrol the country's long sea borders. They were stationed with two aircraft and were responsible for sea rescue. Muizu had accused his predecessor of endangering national sovereignty by giving too much influence to India.

Election posters in Maldives

APA/AFP/Mohammed Afra

Maldives election is a lopsided decision between India and China

“Military Aid” Agreement with China

During the election campaign, Muizu awarded high-dollar contracts to Chinese state-owned enterprises to expand infrastructure. His government also concluded a “military support” agreement with China. Beijing has long been the Maldives' most important creditor.

In 2013, the Maldives joined China's New Silk Road initiative, which aims to build ports and highways to expand trade and China's influence in Asia, Africa and Europe. India has been watching China's expanding influence in the Indian Ocean with suspicion. The election result is now a clear sign of rejection.

A place of strategic importance

The Muslim-dominated South Asian island nation's new parliament will meet for the first time in early May. Maldives is strategically located in the Indian Ocean. International trade routes directly pass over a thousand atolls. With white sandy beaches, the country is a popular luxury travel destination for tourists from all over the world.

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