The Republic of Maldives has decided to leave the Commonwealth over alleged unjust and unfair treatment, the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.
In September, the 53-nation group had warned the small Indian Ocean nation that it risked suspension from the Commonwealth if it did not improve levels of democracy and human rights.
However, the country accused the Commonwealth of wanting to become an active participant in the domestic political discourse in the Maldives.
The ministry said the steps taken by the Commonwealth was contrary to its principles and charters as well as those of the UN.
It also said that the Commonwealth was using the country to increase its ‘’relevance and leverage in international politics”.
“The decision to leave was “difficult, but inevitable,’’ the ministry said.
Meanwhile, the Commonwealth Secretary-General, Patricia Scotland, has described the action by the country as sad and disappointing.
She said, “We hope that this will be a temporary separation and that Maldives will feel able to return to the Commonwealth family and all that it represents in due course.”NAN