Nasheed's demands could lead to more conflicts: Maldives President to NDTV

Nasheed's demands could lead to more conflicts: Maldives President to NDTV

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Male:  Maldives President Dr Mohamed Waheed has said that ousted president Mohamed Nasheed's rigid demands could lead to more conflicts in the country.

In an exclusive interview with NDTV, Dr Waheed has said that he has made repeated offers to Mr Nasheed to join hands in forming a national unity government.

Maintaining that there were no plans to execute an arrest warrant against the ex-president, Dr Waheed said, "If he (Mr Nasheed) wants to be a mature and responsible leader, he has to find a way to be more responsible".

Mr Nasheed stepped down as the president on Tuesday following months of protests against his government and lack of support from the security forces. He claimed that he was ousted at gunpoint, in a bloodless coup. The Maldives has faced one day of rioting and two days more of a political standoff since Mr Nasheed resignation.

Reacting to Mr Nasheed's demands for his resignation and early elections in two months, Dr Waheed said, "That kind of position leads to more conflict. If he wants to be a mature and responsible leader, he has to find a way to be more responsible.

"He has moral responsibility for not creating conditions that will harm people and property."

Speaking on Mr Nasheed's defiant attitude, Dr Waheed explained how he came to be vice-President in Mr Nasheed's rule. He said that Mr Nasheed had approached him during the elections in 2008 to be his running mate. They secured 25 per cent votes in the first round and had to approach other parties, forming a coalition. "A day after Mr Nasheed won the elections, he decided to go on his own. By that, he has breached the trust everyone had in him," Dr Waheed said.

In New Delhi, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh sent a special envoy to Male to assess the situation.

"India is a very close friend of Maldives. I know they are working hard to resolve situation," Dr Waheed said. "I spoke to the PM and now we have a special envoy."

"They mean best interests of the Maldives. I am optimistic India can play key role," Dr Waheed added, saying that he had met the Indian envoy.

The international community has reached out to the island nation after the conflicts began. Hoping to ease the situation, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Oscar Fernandez-Taranco met Dr Waheed on Friday and was expected to meet later with Mr Nasheed. 

"Everybody wants a peaceful solution. No one- United Nations, United Kingdom, India- wants the situation to escalate. I am calling on my colleagues in the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) to try to calm this thing down," Dr Waheed said.

Calling on people not to incite violence, he said that the southern islands have witnessed extensive damage and the police were forced to intervene and take people in. He has, however, said that an arrest warrant will not be executed against the ex-president.

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