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India not pushing Maldives to do anything unconstitutional: Waheed

Delhi,Diplomacy, Mon, 14 May 2012 IANS

New Delhi, May 14 (IANS) Assuring the world that his nation was committed to democracy, Maldivian President Mohamed Waheed, who is on his first official visit to India, said Monday New Delhi was not pushing the Indian Ocean atoll nation to do anything "unconstitutional" on holding presidential elections.


Waheed, who was propelled to the Maldivian presidency under extraordinary circumstances after incumbent Mohamed Nasheed resigned on Feb 7 following a police rebellion, said he was personally committed to holding early elections, but reiterated that political consensus was eluding the coalition government.


"I can assure you that Maldives is committed to democracy. I assure you there is no threat to democracy in Maldives," Waheed said at a press conference on the third day of his five-day visit to India and after holding talks with the top Indian political leadership on the troubled situation in his country.


"I am personally in favour of early elections. But, except for Nasheed's party, all other parties in the country are against elections before July 2013. Also, the constitution has to be amended for holding early elections and for that we need two-thirds majority. This is unlikely to happen now," Waheed said.


Asked for India's response to the situation in Maldives during his talks with the leadership here, including Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Waheed said: "India is not pushing us to do anything that is against our constitutional."


Waheed is in India within three weeks of Nasheed visiting here to drum up support for his call for early presidential polls.


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