Demonstrations Impede Reopening of Maldives Parliament


Today, demonstrations prevented the scheduled reopening of the Maldives parliament after scuffles broke between members of the assembly.

The new President Waheed Hassan was due to deliver his inaugural presidential address to the parliament today.

However, lawmakers supporting former President Mohamed Nasheed ‘s Maldivian Democratic Party blocked the entrance to the chambers and the new President Mohammed Waheed away.

A protest also erupted inside the parliament building and hundreds of party supporters marched the streets and clashed with the police.

President Mohammed Waheed Hassan of Maldives.

The parliament will soon announce a date for new President Mohammed Waheed to make the opening address which is officially required to open the parliament.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today voiced his concern over the continuing political tensions in the country.

Mr. Ban reiterates that the political crisis following the resignation on 7th February of Mohamed Nasheed as president must be resolved peacefully through a national process based on dialogue and consensus.

Mr. Ban urges all parties concerned to resume immediately their political dialogue, both in and outside parliament, in order to find a mutually agreeable way forward on the basis of the Constitution.

Reports say Mr. Nasheed resigned after days of protests and tensions between the Government and military and police. He was succeeded by Mr. Hassan, his former deputy. Reports later emerged indicating that Mr. Nasheed had said his resignation was not voluntary.

On November 2011, the UN human rights chief Navi Pillay Maldives has made “significant advances” during the first few years of its transition to democracy. Also, Maldives deserved credit for the progress it has made since a reform agenda began nearly a decade ago.

Multi-party presidential elections were held for the first time in 2008, ending 30 years of one-party rule, and the country has ratified six of the seven core international treaties.

In addition, Maldives recently became the 118th State Party to the ICC, which is based in The Hague in the Netherlands and can try cases relating to war crimes committed since July 2002.

Mina Fabulous follows the news, especially what is going on in the US State Department. Mina turns State Department waffle into plain English. Mina Fabulous is the pen name of Carmen Avalino, the NewsBlaze production editor. When she isn’t preparing stories for NewsBlaze writers, she writes stories, but to separate her editing and writing identities, she uses the name given by her family and friends.