Opposition condemns MDP’s statement against ‘Dhiyares’

Co-founder and writer of Dhiyares, Ahmed Azaan | Photo: Sun

Malé, Maldives – PPM/PNC coalition has called out not to hinder the freedom of press in Maldives.

In the statement released today, opposition coalition condemned the statement by Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) in which they had accused co-founder and writer of Dhiyares, Ahmed Azaan accusing him of dragging the Maldives diplomatic partners and allies into their own political vendettas following a report by ‘Dhiyares’ about Deputy High Commissioner Rohith Rathish.

Opposition coalition’s statement also read that media is the fourth pillar of democracy and that no one should attempt to hinder the freedom of press in Maldives and attempt to intimidate specific journalists working in Maldives.

Their statement also called out the responsible bodies for media to ensure safety and security to the journalists in Maldives and not to allow other countries and foreign parties to intimidate journalists through the government of Maldives for reporting specific topics.

In the statement released earlier today by MDP, the ruling party accused Dhiyares and its co-founder to be continuously barraging anti- India vitriol and that it appeared to be a well- funded, well- orchestrated and pre- meditated political campaign with the express purpose of whipping up hatred against the Maldives’ closest ally, India.

This comes while Indian High Commission on Thursday, sent a letter to the Foreign Ministry of Maldives, requesting for action to be taken against those attacking the dignity of the Indian High Commission, employees and delegates.

The commission stated that such repeated attacks on the dignity of the High Commission, the Head of the Mission and members of the diplomatic staff can affect the efficient performance of the functions of the High Commission and can damage the time-tested and mutually beneficial bilateral relations between India and the Maldives.

The Indian High Commission in their letter to the Foreign Ministry, requested to ensure enhanced protection of the premises of the Mission, residence of High Commissioner and residences of other diplomats, and prevent any attack on his/their person, freedom and dignity, and prevent any disturbances to the peace of the Mission or impairment of its dignity in accordance with relevant articles of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations (1961).

Following the requests from the Indian High Commission, the Foreign Ministry of Maldives released the statement, saying that they have been noticing frequent posts from local medias attacking foreign diplomats, envoys and members of the foreign missions.

The ministry stated that such posts may affect the long lasting friendships between Maldives and other countries and that it may incite hatred within the citizens against these countries. The ministry noted that such posts also become an obstacle for the government in ensuring the security and safety of the foreign diplomats. 

The Ministry requested local medias, to keep their actions such that it does not violate international agreements such as the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. 

The parliament has also requested Maldives Media Council to take action against to take against medias spreading such malicious information again foreign diplomats.