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A change for the worse: On the rapid decline in India-Maldives ties

  • Published
    11th Jan, 2024

Context:

India and the Maldives ought to recognize the advantages of strengthening their relationship.

Maldivian Ministerial Missteps

  • Tweet Controversy: Maldivian ministers' offensive tweets targeting PM Modi spark outrage.
  • Diplomatic Fallout: Deletion of tweets, minister suspensions, and diplomatic summons follow, but damage persists.
  • Indian Reaction: Social media calls for a boycott of Maldives as economic tensions rise post-tweets.

Shifting Geopolitical Dynamics

  • Change in Leadership: President Muizzu's divergent approach from his predecessor signals a shift.
  • Strained Relations: Choosing Turkey and China over India for state visits raises concerns about priorities.
  • Security Concerns: Muizzu persists in pressing India for military personnel withdrawal, disrupting established security dynamics.

The Need for Diplomatic Reassessment

  • Mutual Restraint: Escalating hypernationalistic sentiments demand both Delhi and Male to reassess their responses.
  • Economic Interdependence: Boycott calls may backfire as India-Maldives ties hold economic, strategic, and regional significance.
  • Preserving Stability: Amid regional elections, India must navigate domestic political changes without compromising bilateral ties or regional stability.
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