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Circulation of Fake news in Maldives

September 25, 2023 11:27 AM IST

Presidential Election | Maldives | European Union Election | India-Maldives

As the second round of the Presidential election in the Maldives approaches on September 30th, concerns over the spread of fake news have emerged. The High Commission of India in the Maldives has issued a press release denouncing a sustained campaign of fake reports aimed at harassing Indian high commission officials and the Indian expat community residing in the Maldives. These fake reports appear to be designed to create animosity and fear among the Maldivian public, potentially straining the friendly relations between India and the Maldives.

Furthermore, the European Union Election Observation Mission has noted the proliferation of unverified claims and falsehoods during the election campaign. The mission has called out Dhiyares News for publishing unverified news articles targeting the India-Maldives relationship. The rise in fake news raises concerns about the impact of misinformation on the upcoming election and diplomatic relations. Meanwhile, the Indian High Commission has called upon the Maldivian authorities to investigate such instances of circulation of fake news.

It is notable that the India and Maldives are close and friendly neighbours sharing cultural links between the people. Maldives figures prominently in India’s Neighbourhood first policy as well as the SAGAR vision. India has also lent support to Maldives for capacity building and training of personnel, boosting defence capabilities to ensure a secure Indian Ocean Region and improve connectivity through major infrastructure projects. In addition India has been instrumental with 47 High Impact Community Development Projects bringing about a positive change in the archipelago nation.

The polling that will be held later this month will see a direct runoff between the top two candidates, that includes, incumbent President Ibrahim Solih and Dr. Mohammed Muizzu of Opposition PPM PNC alliance.

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