The complexity of the ongoing crisis in the Maldives has just deepened with Dunya Maumoon describing the call by former Maldivian president Mohamed Nasheed inviting India to intervene as “irresponsible” and saying that the imposition of Emergency in the country was a “necessity.” Dunya is former Maldivian foreign minister and daughter of the currently incarcerated former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.
Speaking to The Indian Express, on the phone line from Male, Dunya Maumoon said, “I believe that the call by Nasheed for foreign intervention is very irresponsible even via certain countries. Yes, we are having a crisis and there are lot of issues we need to resolve and I have been continuously calling for peaceful dialogue and enough of war, we have seen a lot of destructive actions and our people are very concerned. As a country, we really need to make the decisions ourselves and find a way by ourselves.”
She went on to add: “I know that there is concern because of the state of the emergency but I believe there was a necessity, perhaps in order for stability for the President (Yameen) himself to take some actions and I’m very happy that our MNDF and police forces have acted responsibly in this current situation to ensure peace and calm prevails in male and the society of normal Maldivians maintained. And I hope that and we will quickly move in to better times.”
By supporting the Maldivian president’s actions, Dunya made it clear that she is on President Yameen’s side – and against her own father, who was arrested by Maldivian defence forces on the night of February 6, as well as against her own brother Faris, one of the nine whose conviction in jail was overturned by the now arrested Maldivian chief justice on February 1.
This falling out in full public glare in Maldives’ first political family clearly makes it harder for Delhi to find a middle path to the crisis. The Indian government has already issued two statements criticising the political chaos in the Maldives and that it was especially “disturbed” by the imposition of Emergency.
On the phone line from Maldives, Dunya told the Indian Express that she was issuing this statement because she was “fed up” with the continuing attack on her by the “pro-Nasheed” Rajje TV channel, and decided that it was time to defend herself.
Visited my father @maumoonagayoom at Dhoonidhoo prison. He is well Alhamdulillah!
— Dunya Maumoon (@dunyamaumoon) February 7, 2018
She conceded that there was a split in her family, that her father and Nasheed remained together against Yameen in this political crisis. But Dunya maintained that she wanted her father out of jail and that she had just returned from meeting him in Dhonidoo prison.
“He is my father, he is in a mess that Nasheed has created,” she said.
Asked if she was now allying with President Yameen, Dunya said, “President Yameen is my family too.” She explained that her father and the current president are half-brothers.