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SOURCE: AFI

Pro-Chinese Maldivian Goverment has issued a Statement saying that “Concerning the media reports regarding the port call of the Chinese Research Vessel XIANG YANG HONG 3 at Male’, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs would like to inform that a diplomatic request was made by the Government of China to the Government of Maldives, for the necessary clearances to make a port call, for rotation of personnel and replenishment.”

Pro-Chinese Maldivian Goverment also claimed that “The vessel would not be conducting any research while in the Maldivian waters. The Maldives has always been a welcoming destination for vessels of friendly countries, and continues to host both civilian and military vessels making port calls for peaceful purposes. “

Such port calls not only enhance bilateral ties between the Maldives and its partner countries, but also demonstrate the centuries old tradition of the Maldivian people welcoming vessels from friendly countries. The Maldives continues to uphold international best practices, and relevant international maritime law on all such cases.