President: Past government isolated Maldives in the name of patriotism

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih arriving at R. Inguraidhoo. (Photo/MDP)

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has said that Maldives was kept separate from the international community in the name of protecting patriotism in Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom’s term as president.

Speaking at R. Inguraidhoo after arriving there for his campaign, President Solih said that the past government had isolated Maldives from the world under the pretence of patriotism and so the connections to other countries had frayed.

Highlighting the recently revealed “Heyo verikan” policy, President Solih said that the most important component of that is foreign policy.

“However, today the times have changed. We cannot stay isolated. If we want to accelerate our freedom, security and development, we need to maintain relations with reliable countries,” he said.

He further said that strengthening bonds between countries will facilitate getting aid from them for the development of Maldives.

Today, the government has strengthened relations with 185 countries, he said, adding that Maldivians can now travel to 89 countries without visas.

President Solih said that the world now trusts the Maldives and that Maldives got to be chair of the United Nations is one of the greatest honours.

In particular, it was one of the things that made Maldives more prominent as a leader of small countries, he said.

“We have chaired the General Assembly of the UN for the first time. This is something that we will not be able to do in the next 100 years,” President Solih said.

He also said that the claims of the rival candidates that the military is deployed in Maldives are deceptive.

President Solih said that the military will not be stationed on any island nothing is being done under their control.

He said that only the Maldivians hold the power in the Maldives.

Projects planned for Inguraidhoo for President Solih’s second term:

  • Developing the docks further
  • Reclaiming land and building a boatyard
  • Constructing a new building for the council
  • Building a handball court