Saturday 24th Feb 2024
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MP Ibrahim Rasheed

Ruling party MP accuses President Solih of taking bribe for recognizing Mauritius' sovereignty over Chagos Archipelago

Ruling party MP Ibrahim Rasheed accused President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih of accepting a bribe of USD 500 million to recognize Mauritius' sovereignty over the Chagos Archipelago. The Maldives has always maintained that the United Kingdom has sovereignty over the disputed territory, but in 2022, President Solih sent a letter to the Prime Minister of Mauritius, expressing the Maldives' desire to recognize their sovereignty over the Chagos Archipelago. This sudden change in stance came amid a dispute over the delimitation of the maritime boundary between Mauritius and the Maldives in the Indian Ocean, which is currently being heard in the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.
The public was unaware of this letter until the Mauritius legal team announced it, and MP Rasheed claims that the President's actions will affect the tribunal's decision on the maritime boundary. He alleged that President Solih accepted the bribe from foreign fisheries companies present in Mauritius, which offer licenses to industrial fishing companies to fish in their waters. Rasheed implied that the President took money from these foreign companies and called for him to return the money and retract his letter.
The MP also stated that the Chagos Archipelago historically belongs to the Maldives and that there is a high chance that the country will lose a significant portion of its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) due to President Solih's actions. He called on the President to rectify the situation by retracting the letter and returning the money.