Muslim Maldives 350,000 fear loss of country to rising sea.
The Maldive islands are fast disappearing under the sea. The Maldives should formally join Pakistan. As Pakistani citizens they would carry Pakistani passports and would be able to travel to Pakistan. There is plenty of land available in Pakistan. The Maldives should pass a resolution in parliament requesting Pakistani citizenship. Rupee News recommends that Pakistan give the 350,000 residents a home in Pakistan in exchange for facilities (airport, base) in the Maldivies ’till their island is still above sea level. The Maldives want to buy the land–350,000 would be a small city which could be built from scratch on the Karachi-Gwader freeway. Adequate security and basic facilities should be provided to them. The Maldive citizens should be required to fund a similar city for the stranded Pakistanis in Bangladesh who sill fly the Pakistani flag on their shanty huts. The former President Gayoom wanted Maldives to remain 100% Muslim
Maldive citizens should begin buying land on an informal basis in a specific area of Pakistan, and begin visiting the new city.
“We are trying to send our message to let the world know what is happening and what will happen to the Maldives if climate change isn’t checked” Mohamed Nasheed was quoted as saying to the press as soon as he resurfaced from underwater.
India losing out to Chinese interests in it’s neighbourhood. Muslim Maldives joins China’s-string of pearls-threat to India. Nepal, Pakistan and Bangladesh share better relations with Beijing than New Delhi. Helpless Delhi overruled on Chinese bases in Maldives and Lanka. There was talk about the Chinese setting up a military bases in one of the Maldivian islands. (http://rupeenews.com/2008/07/08/encircling-india-chinas-string-of-pearl-strategy/). Mr. Nasheed may or may continue the Pro-China policy of his predecessor. India’s ocean is Chinese lake: “String of pearls” threaten India
Maldivian President Mohammed Nasheed signs a document calling on all countries to cut down their carbon dioxide emissions, in Girifushi, Maldives, 17 Oct 2009
In an effort to highlight climate change, the Cabinet of the government of the Maldives, an Indian island nation, has held a meeting under water.
Meetings of government ministers can sometimes be a dry affair. That certainly was not the case during the latest gathering of the Cabinet of the Maldives.
President Mohamed Nasheed and 11 of his government ministers, plus the vice president and Cabinet secretary, donned scuba gear and plunged six meters below the shimmering turquoise surface of an Indian Ocean lagoon.
The Cabinet seated behind tables, amid a coral backdrop, used hand gestures to communicate.
The president is a certified diver but other Cabinet members had to take lessons in recent weeks to prepare for the unprecedented meeting.
One resolution was approved – a declaration calling for concerted global action on climate change ahead of a major United Nations conference on the subject scheduled for December in Copenhagen.
The ministers used waterproof markers to sign the document, printed on a white board.
President Nasheed, surfacing to speak with reporters, said he hopes his unusual Cabinet meeting will prompt global action.
“We want to see that everyone else is also occupied as much as we are [with climate change] and would like to see that people actually do something about it,” he said. “If Maldives cannot be saved today we do not feel that there is not much of a chance for the rest of the world.”
The Maldives consists of nearly 1,200 coral islands. The land surface pokes just a couple of meters on average above sea level, making it the lowest-lying nation in the world.
It is feared that rising sea levels could submerge the country this century.
President Nasheed has previously announced plans to buy a new homeland for his country’s 350,000 citizens if the Maldives does eventually disappear below the waves.
The Maldives are a group of islands in the Indian Ocean. Muslim Maldives joins China’s-string of pearls-threat to India. Its population is 100% Muslim. The island paradise has seen attempts by India to take it over and it has rested all attempts at absorption into its larger neighbor. In November 1988, a group of Maldivians headed by Mr. Lutfee a small time businessman aided by the Indian backed Tamils took over the island. This was a total and unmitigated disaster for India. The population stood up to the Indian attempt to take over the island and President Gayoom was able to stage a counter coup and return to power. India troops in the Maldives ostensibly to help the government had to withdraw.
To bring the smaller Independent States/countries in the Indian sphere of influence with the use of RAW, the case of Maldives makes an important example. In November 1988, the Eilam Peoples’ Liberation Front comprising about 200 Tamil secessionists on the pay roll of RAW were tasked to stage the drama of an uprising on that peaceful island. At the request of the President of Maldives, Mr Mamoon Abdul Qayyum, Indian Armed Forces ‘quelled’ the insurgency engineered by themselves and thus tried to sneak into the administrative mechanism of that peace-loving country. Summary of operation (Dhaka Diary: RAW 2008: An Instrument of Indian Imperialism by Isha Khan Dhaka Bangladesh ). Details in BOOK REVIEW: The India Doctrine by Munshi
Maldives Cabinet Meets Below Waves to Highlight Climate Change Threat, By Steve Herman, New Delhi, 17 October 2009
On a humid, airless night last March, Mohamed Nasheed – the 42-year-old president of the Maldives – opened up his palace in Male for an unusual public event. A projection screen was hung at the back of a ballroom and brightly coloured chairs were arranged in rows. Then the audience was shown in: lawyers, cabinet members, presidential advisers and journalists, along with a sizeable chunk of Maldives society.
Nasheed, dressed in an open-neck striped shirt and dark chinos, sat in the front row. The lights dimmed and scenes of environmental mayhem unfolded on the screen: Sydney Opera House in flames, ice sheets crashing into the seas, deserts spreading and forests burning.
Thus the people of the Maldives had their first glimpse of Franny Armstrong’s documentary, The Age of Stupid, in which Pete Postlethwaite plays the last man left alive in a post-apocalyptic, climate-fried world.
The film is scrappy but passionate, a classic example of agit-prop cinema. But in the dripping night heat of Male, The Age of Stupid had a very different effect on its audience than it has had in the west. Its message seemed direct and immediate, a call to arms. Nor is it hard to understand such emotion. The islands that make up the Maldives are threatened with complete inundation, probably by the end of the century, as ice sheets melt and sea levels rise catastrophically, thanks to global warming.
The islands stand less than a couple of metres above sea level. In fact, their highest point, at 2.3 metres, is the “lowest high point” for any nation on Earth. It won’t take much to inundate them. Hence the impact of the film which left its audience desperate for reassurance from their president as he moved to a microphone stand in the centre of the ballroom.
“If man can walk on the moon, we can unite to defeat our common carbon enemy,” Nasheed told them. “And so today, I announce that the Maldives will become the first carbon-neutral country in the world.”
The announcement was a typically slick PR exercise by Nasheed. He had only been propelled into power a few weeks earlier in a national vote that had made him “the world’s first democratically elected president of a 100% Muslim country”, as he puts it.
Yet he was already revealing himself to be an adroit and effective operator. The former investigative journalist, jailed six times by his authoritarian predecessor, Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, and made an Amnesty prisoner of conscience in 1991, has begun making waves – in every sense.
Apart from his pledge to turn the Maldives – a collection of atolls and islands in the Indian Ocean that have become one of the world’s most luxurious tourist resorts – into a carbon-neutral state, he has revealed that he has embarked on an ambitious campaign to buy up land – in India, Sri Lanka or Australia – on which he will build a New Maldives to replace the old one when it disappears under the waves. This will be achieved by using the country’s vast tourism revenues to establish “a sovereign wealth fund” to relocate its people.
“Our actions will be a template, an action kit for other nations across the world,” he said recently.
Last week Nasheed – or “Anni” as he is generally known – was at it again. First, he wowed the Conservative party conference in Manchester with a flawlessly delivered speech – typically presented without notes – on the importance of centre-right politics when it comes to saving the world. Then he topped this performance by announcing that this Saturday he will chair the world’s first underwater cabinet meeting.
Mohamed Nasheed was born in Male in May 1967, the son of a prosperous businessman. He was educated at Majeediyya secondary school in the Maldives before continuing his studies at a school in Colombo, Sri Lanka, in 1981 and then, a year later, at Dauntsey’s school in Wiltshire where he sat his A-levels. Afterwards, he took a degree in marine studies at Liverpool John Moores University.
He returned to the Maldives in the late 1980s – and ran straight into trouble. He founded his own magazine, Sangu, and published a series of investigative reports about President Gayoom’s regime, which he accused of being corrupt and guilty of a string of human rights abuses. After the fifth issue, Gayoom had had enough. Police raided the magazine’s offices and arrested Nasheed. The 23-year-old spent several months in solitary confinement, accused of attempting to overthrow the government.
These allegations and bouts of harassment were repeated over the next 10 years. “I have personally experienced the worst that a malicious regime can contrive in order to suppress its people,” he told the Conservative conference last week. “I was imprisoned on 16 different occasions and spent a total of six years in jail. Of these, I spent 18 months in solitary confinement.”
The saddest aspect was that he missed the births of his two daughters, he said. “It was a tough reminder of a fundamental truth… that the freedom of the individual should not be destroyed at the whim of an over-mighty state.” The remark, predictability, sent the Tory conference into ovation overdrive. But then Nasheed knows how to work a crowd, if nothing else.
In 2005, Nasheed fled the Maldives to Britain. You could “always talk to a western government about democracy”, he said. He returned to his homeland after a few months, however, and in 2008 stood against Gayoom – then Asia’s longest serving president – in the Maldives first ever democratic elections. Nashood won, with 54% of the votes.
He has since shown a striking sureness of action, though his short reign has not been without its critics. His remarks in Manchester last week, aimed to gee along his centre-right allies, together with his plans for underwater cabinet meetings and for moving the entire population to a promised land free of the threat of inundation, have led to accusations that he is a little light on political substance and too gimmicky for his own good.
Nasheed is scaring off investors, say opponents who include his predecessor, Gayoom. “This man is so hellbent on hogging the media limelight that he is forgetting to do his job, which is to run the country,” said a spokesman for the former president.
Such criticism reeks of sour grapes, of course. Nevertheless, it is questionable just how far Nasheed can go for his country. Just who will sell him the land where he can build his New Maldives? And just what good will it do to make his nation carbon-neutral? Providing answers to these questions will not be easy, though in many ways they distract from the real purpose of Nasheed’s plans.
We are all Maldivians, he argues. Every nation on the planet is threatened today by global warming. The Maldives and its inhabitants just happen to be first in line for the great calamity when it arrives. They may survive more than 100 years, of course, if rises in sea level remain modest. However, the oceans will continue to rise throughout next century and probably the one after it, scientists warn. The islands will therefore have to face their watery fate either in the 21st century or the 22nd, or even in the 23rd.
The actions of Mohamed Nasheed are therefore aimed at stimulating action by the west in the hope his country can reap some collateral benefit when a programme for dealing effectively with climate change is eventually hammered out. As he says: “If scientists are not able to save the Maldives, then they won’t be able to save the world.”
The United Nations concluded in 2007 that sea-level rises of 20cm to 60cm would occur by 2100.
The figures were derived from estimates of how much the sea would increase in volume as the world heated up, and from increases in run-off water from melting glaciers on land.
But the report contained an important caveat: that its estimates contained very little input from melting polar ice sheets.
The UN forecast, therefore, underestimates forthcoming changes. Most other estimates tend to be more extreme and suggest that by 2100, sea-levels could rise by between 1m and 1.5m – enough to cause major problems for the people of the Maldives. Can Mohamed Nasheed save the Maldives – and the rest of the world – from the rising seas?The Maldives president roused the Tory faithful at Manchester last week. Next Saturday he will hold an underwater cabinet meeting to highlight the dangers of global warming
Robin McKie The Observer, Sunday 11 October 2009 Article history
Islam remains the only official religion of The Maldives with popular support of the people of the Republic. The open practice of all other religions are forbidden and such actions are liable to prosecution under the law of the country. According to the revised constitution, in article two, it says that the republic “is based on the principles of Islam.” Article nine says that “a non-Muslim may not become a citizen of the Maldives”; number ten says that “no law contrary to any principle of Islam can be applied in the Maldives.” Article nineteen states that “citizens are free to participate in or carry out any activity that is not expressly prohibited by sharia or by the law.” Wiki
The Maldives language Devahi is a derivative of Arabic and written right to left like Arabic.
The current Maldivian leader Mr. Nasheed is playing with fire, but courting Delhi may bring about serious opposition to the the new leader. Former President President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom is not a spent force, he lost by a slim majority to Mr. Nasheed in an election that was contested. If Mr. Nasheed loses to Mr. Gayoom or one of his proteges, the Maldives will again be working with China and Pakistan.
New Delhi, May 14 (IANS) A clear disconnect has emerged in the military views of India and the US, with a top American military commander saying Washington is comfortable with the increased presence of the Chinese Navy in the Indian Ocean, a suggestion that New Delhi bristles at.
This apart, Admiral Timothy J. Keating, who heads the Hawaii-based US Pacific Command, said he would like China to come aboard – as an observer and later as a participant – in the annual India-US Malabar naval war games that occasionally take on a trilateral hue. India is hardly expected to root for this.
And, the US would be comfortable with the Chinese Navy acquiring berthing facilities in Sri Lanka and the Maldives, a move that India has been vehemently opposing, Keating, who was on a two-day visit here, told reporters Thursday.
Keating also felt the broader India-US military-military contact could be considerably ramped if New Delhi signs three rather controversial pacts, one of them on providing mutual logistics support, that have been pending for long. India has often said it is uncomfortable with the language of the pacts and that they would have to be reworked.
“It’s not a question of us versus them. There’s lots of room in the Indian Ocean for various players,” Keating contended.
“We are not in favour of splitting the Indian Ocean into sphere but are talking in terms of cooperating and collaborating and sharing best practices,” he maintained. Thai Indian. Disconnect emerges in India-US military views, May 14th, 2009 – 10:09 pm ICT by IANS
Delhi has tried to monopolize international oceans and prevent China and Pakistan to participate in regimes that would monitor and keep them open for word wide travel. Bharat aimed to crate a regional grouping stretching from the eastern coast of Africa to Australia. The US and China were specifically excluded on the ground they were not Indian Ocean littoral states. Bharat’s efforts in attempting to create the “Indian Ocean Naval Seminar (IONS) last year have faltered. The US has no problems with China getting footholds in Maldives and Sri Lanka. Delhi sees these footholds in Gwader, Maldives and Sri Lanka as part of the Chinese “String of Pearls strategy” which encircles Bharat