Tainting Maldives’ image affects tourism: foreign minister

Foreign minister Dr. Mohamed Asim.

Foreign minister Dr. Mohamed Asim.

Foreign minister Dr. Mohamed Asim has raised concerns over how smearing the international image of the Maldives is impacting its tourism industry.

Speaking on national television late Friday, Asim warned that sullying the nation’s image would have negative repercussions on the people, and thus more work must be done to provide factual information to foreign bodies.

He acknowledged the role played by Maldivian ambassadors in reaching out to the world, stating that the Maldives’ “network” of envoys are working hard to bring the true picture of the nation’s civil landscape to the international arena.

“Should the number of tourists decrease to the Maldives, our economy would suffer,” he pointed out as he highlighted the travel advisories to the Maldives that had been issued by several countries amidst the ongoing state of emergency in the island nation.

However, Asim declared that the world has seen that there is no danger to tourists in the Maldives, as the resorts and their related transports remain peaceful and unaffected by the political upsurge. He asserted that the government would ensure the security and protection of all visitors to the archipelago.

The Maldivian Ambassador to the European Union and Belgium, Ahmed Shian, further noted that all the travel advisories so far did not advise against travelling to the Maldives, but merely to avoid political rallies and exercise caution while in capital Male.

“It’s the same advice we would give to Maldivians in London; to not participate in protests. This is a very general advisory,” he said.

Shian added that the lack of “negative” travel advisories indicate that the world is aware of the true situation in the Maldives.

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