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After China’s Claim, Maldives, Australia Say They Did Not Participate In CIDCA Forum

In response to CIDCA’s statement, Maldives’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Sunday that the Maldivian government did not participate in the forum and communicated its decision of “not to participate in the forum” to the embassy of China on 15 November

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After China’s claim to hold the China-Indian Ocean Region forum, Maldives denied its participation in such activity.

China International Development Cooperation Agency (CIDCA) issues a joint statement on 22 November, claiming that 19 countries participated including Maldives, where China proposed establishing a marine disaster prevention and mitigation cooperation mechanism between China and countries in the Indian Ocean region. However, India was not invited to the forum.

According to the CIDCA’s statement, the China-Indian Ocean Region Forum on Development  Cooperation was held in a hybrid way under the theme of “Shared Development: Theory and Practice from the Perspective of the Blue Economy” in Kunming and China is prepared to provide the necessary financial, material, and technical assistance to countries in need.

The statement said that representatives from 19 countries, including Indonesia, Pakistan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Maldives, Nepal, Australia, and others attended the meeting.

In response to CIDCA’s statement, Maldives’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Sunday that the Maldivian government did not participate in the forum and communicated its decision of “not to participate in the forum” to the embassy of China on 15 November. The statement said that participation by individuals or groups of individuals from the country does not constitute official representation by the government.

The statement further said that according to Article 115 (J) of the constitution, only the serving president may determine, conduct and oversee the foreign policy and conduct the foreign policy and foreign relations of the country.

Australia also denied its official presence in the forum, Australian High Commissioner in Delhi, Barry O’Farrell said in a tweet, “Contrary to media reporting, no Australian government official attended the Kunming China-Indian Ocean Forum on Development Cooperation.”

However, India was not invited to this forum, which can be seen as an attempt to undermine India's presence in the region amid concerns about the politicisation of the Indian Ocean region.


Tags assigned to this article:
china China-Indian Ocean Region Forum CIDCA