MALE - The United States objected Saturday to the holding of immediate elections in the Maldives, where the new president Mohamed Waheed has agreed to conduct an inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the transfer of power.
Nobody believes that elections can be organized properly at the moment, said Saturday in Male the U.S. Secretary of State Assistant for South and Central Asia Robert Blake, after meeting with President Mohamed Waheed and ousted President Mohamed Nasheed.
In a situation like this, everyone must make compromises, said Blake, who was on a visit to the islands 12 hours in an attempt to clarify the political situation.
Mr Nasheed took office in 2008 after the first democratic elections in the country, accuses Mohamed Waheed, the former vice president, of involvement in the conspiracy which ousted. Since his departure Tuesday, he called elections.
Waheed also rejected the idea of holding elections before the end of his term in November 2013.
We will respect the constitutional process. The next elections are close enough, Waheed said. The country is deeply divided. We need time to heal.
Mohamed Waheed has on the other hand agreed to Mr. Blake to conduct an investigation after the change of power.
The international community has not challenged the legality of my presidency, but there are questions about the circumstances of my coming to power, he said. I agree that there was an independent investigation on this point.
Friday, Victoria Nuland, spokesman for the State Department had indicated that the U.S. would work with the Government of Maldives. But we think that clarification should be made as to the circumstances surrounding the transfer of power, she told by inviting all parties to agree to appoint an external authority to do so.
Ms. Nuland said Thursday that Washington recognizes the legitimacy of the new government, provoking the anger of Mr. Nasheed, who considers himself the victim of a coup.
Mohamed Nasheed said he was forced to resign Tuesday by a show of force by the police and army against him.
Events organized for weeks by the opposition parties demanded his departure, after the arrest of a prominent judge.
If it lasted, the political crisis could affect the tourism industry in the archipelago with 1,200 islands, luxury tourist destination known for its beautiful beaches and lagoons. The country last year attracted over 850,000 visitors.