China’s ‘Spy ships’ in Maldives has damaging political implications for Muizzu’s Party

The archipelago nation of Maldives is not only strategically positioned geographically, but is also a vital political partner for countries competing in the Indian Ocean region. Given its important strategic location, Maldives has for long been playing the balancing game, especially between the two Asian giants, India and China. The political tilt towards either of the two giants is however determined by the political ideology that sits in power in Male. At present with Mohammad Muizzu’s party at the helm, the shift is more prominently towards Beijing, quite evidently.    

Apart from the President of Maldives visit to Beijing, a set of other prominent factors have strongly indicated a significant shift in the country’s policy from its predecessors. Among these factors however, the one that seems to stand out most is the statement by the Foreign Affairs Ministry of Maldives that confirmed the Chinese research vessel or more commonly understood to be a ‘spy’ ship, the Xiang Yang Hong 3’s docking in Male. This decision by the Maldivian government however, as underscored by many analysts, came after Beijing’s announcement of elevating its partnership with the island country to being strategically cooperative in nature along with the extension of USD 130 million in grants and double the more in loans. The fact that international organisations were quick to realise the debt burden Maldives was beginning to undertake and declare the island country as a risky investment avenue, goes on to showcase the depth of the economic turbulence Maldives will most likely face due to its re-orientation towards Beijing.

Furthermore, as stated by a prominent think-tank, the surge of China’s scientific research ships in the South Asian region is majorly tasked to collect data from the oceans for military purposes including submarine operations. A noteworthy global concern was also …read more

Source:: News Wire