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China Has Grabbed More Land Than The East India Company: Ex-Maldives President Nasheed


Nasheed's office hit back claiming that the case sent by the police for prosecution over Yameen's detention is an action of the government for its political gain and called the Prosecutor General to send the case back without prosecution
Former Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed said that the island nation owned $1.5 to 2 billion debt to China which forces it to cede territory to the communist state.
Nasheed who was president till 2012 fled to the UK after conviction in anti-terror law for ordering the arrest of a judge.
Speaking to the Nikkei Asian Review in an interview, the former Maldives president said the Maldives takes in less than $100 million a month in government revenue, however, as of January, China accounted for "nearly 80%" of the Maldives' foreign debt.
The Chinese government denied the allegation.
Ji Rong, spokesperson of the Chinese Embassy, said in a statement,"Recently, former Maldivian President Nasheed made a lot of false remarks in the Indian media. He pointed fingers at the practical cooperation between China and Maldives and alleged that China engaged in so-called land grabbing of Maldivian islands, which undermines the security of the Indian Ocean region."
"These allegations are apparently groundless with no regard to facts, Ji Rong said.
Nasheed told the Nikkei Asian Review: "Roads going to nowhere, airports that will be empty," adding that, "all the while, the Maldives' debts are accruing interest at high rates."
"If the Maldives falls behind, China will ask for equity from the owners of various islands and infrastructure operators, and Beijing will then "get free hold of that land," he told the newspaper.
"Without firing a single shot, China has grabbed more land than the East India Company at the height of the 19th century," Nasheed said.
Nasheed alleged that China had already occupied "16 islands" under president Abdulla Yameen.
However, China said: "As a matter of fact, when Nasheed was the President, China and Maldives had already launched relevant cooperation projects."
"The land grabbing allegation by Nasheed is apparently meant to serve certain political purposes of him," the Chinese foreign ministry said in its statement.
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