A student from HSS school wrote about Maldives emergency situation

Maldives emergency situation: As Reported by Reuters the country of China has sent in 30 warships in the Indian Ocean miles away from the Trump finger sized nation of the Maldives which is ravaged by a constitutional crisis. As most of you know the situation of Maldives has been volatile at best. The opposition leaders have been arrested and supreme court justices changed and emergency forcibly declared by the current president Yameen. This has led the opposition leader to ask for a hail mary to save his country and has India as the player to deliver the Hail Mary. China, on the other hand, has warned India to stay away from the Maldives with the habitual statement of “respecting the sovereignty of Maldives” but out of the usual, the USA has been speaking of this issue.

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Why is the USA apprehensive about a tiny island nation?

The Maldives has seen its share of instability, uncertainty and crisis. When their former president was asked to step down in 2012. There rose the new president Abdulla Yameen and was elected in contentious fashion. After he was elected, he started taking measures which alarmed the lawmakers in New Delhi.

Maldives emergency situationIndia and Maldives have shared a real close big brother-little brother relationship since 1988 when the operation cactus took place which India helped then president Gayoom pull out the thorns on his side by helping him survive a coup instigated by Sri-Lankan mercenaries which received words of encouragement from the US president Ronald Regan and Margret Thatcher. Since then India and Maldives have been cooperative both politically and economically as India amped investments and trade into the Maldives. But things have gone downhill since Yameen took office. He since then has become increasingly cosy with China which was unprecedented for the Maldives. He started nullifying contracts with India which would bring 500 million in investment into the Maldives. He has also been ramping up anti- Indian Sentiment ever since. Meanwhile, ASEAN countries are looking up to India to counter Chinese influence in the region and they are looking for a strong brand of leadership from India and are looking for a tougher approach towards the country of Maldives. India, on the other hand, is more cautious because of possible china retaliation if India intervenes into the Maldives with a standoff in the region of Doklam which is of high strategic importance for India.

China, on the other hand, is highly profiting from the current government in the Maldives. China has signed an FTA with the Maldives in which China stands to gain more trade revenue and service tax and has wider markets to expand into especially in the areas of tourism and the fishery industry. This agreement also allows Chinese investors to start hotels, casinos in the country. The current president has also waived a long-standing rule in his country of allowing foreigners to own land in their country. We all know who benefits from this rule as well. On top of all this China accounts for 70% of total debt of the country of Maldives. This FTA increases the debt to 90% which means China has more influence over the current government and can leverage this for actions which benefit them just like they have leveraged Pakistan in recent years.

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But why is the USA concerned with all of this in the Maldives?

The never-ending battle of influence naturally. China has taken advantage of the weak and destabilizing leadership in the USA and has pushed its agenda over the global stage and USA has realized that lately. So the USA is pushing its allies to counter this and so is the case with the Maldives. India is the only country is in the position in the region that can help the USA. But India in itself is a kind of Sophie’s choice moment. So with all this information as POLL of the week do you think India should Intervene or should they not?

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By

Vikram Sairam

Hindu Senior Secondary school

Author: Elyuxen

Elyuxen, a student newspaper where students get to work as well as publish all the news related to colleges in and around Hyderabad. It is the first ever student newspaper in South India which is successfully running. The beauty and the tagline of this newspaper is it is *For the student, by the student, of the student

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