Qasim: Nothing good can come out of tonight’s protest, it is a political event

Incumbent leader of Jumhoory Party (JP), Qasim Ibrahim, has been reelected as the party’s leader. (Photo/V News)

Jumhoory Party’s (JP) leader and presidential candidate, on Friday, has remarked that nothing constructive can come out of the protest by the opposition alliance scheduled for tonight against the ruling by the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea’s (ITLOS) on the border dispute between Maldives and Mauritius.

The opposition alliance comprises of the opposition PPM-PNC coalition, ‘The Democrats’, a faction formed within main ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) which has now filed for registration as a new political party, and Maldives National Party (MNP).

Qasim, on Tuesday, urged his party members against participation in this protest.

Qasim, in an interview to VTV on Friday afternoon to further explain the decision against participation in the project, said that nothing constructive will come out of the protest. He went on to describe the event as one staged for political purposes.

He stressed that the only outcome of tonight’s protest will be the loss of peace and stability within the nation. Qasim said JP will not do anything that can lead to instability within the nation and contradicts public interest.

“We do not want to do anything that does not produce constructive results. The president cannot be removed from his post. ITLOS’ ruling cannot be changed either,” he said.

Qasim said he believes the only path toward achieving an effective result is to undertake all possible efforts to recover the lost maritime territory of the Maldives, meticulously and under the guidance of foreign experts. He added that if such a path exists, his government succeed in this work within the first six months.

Qasim, noting JP will always rally behind Maldivian citizens with respect to the maritime border dispute, expressed the party’s willingness to work against the government on the matter. However, he emphasized that the party does not believe in going to tonight’s protest to stir up public unrest.

However, he said that there will be no obstruction to any JP members who wish to partake in the protest in an individual capacity.

ITLOS, on April 28th, concluded that the conflicting Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) between Mauritius and Maldives will be divided between the two using the equidistance formula as argued by Maldives in the case.

Thus, Maldives gains 47,232 square kilometers from the 95,563 square kilometers of maritime territory in dispute while Mauritius gains 45,331 square kilometers. 

The opposition alliance claim Maldives is entitled to the 95,563 square kilometers of maritime territory in dispute.