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Chinese vessel will not conduct any surveys in Maldives: Foreign Ministry

Mariyath Mohamed
23 January 2024, MVT 20:52
China's survey vessel, headed towards the Maldives.
Mariyath Mohamed
23 January 2024, MVT 20:52

Ministry of Foreign Affairs has stated that China's research vessel Xiang Yang Hong 03 will not be conducting any surveys in the Maldives waters even though it docks in the country's port.

The Ministry revealed that permission for docking had been granted after receiving a diplomatic request from the government of China for permission to make a port call for the purposes of replenishment and rotation of personnel.

The statement went on to say that Maldives has always welcomed both civilian and military vessels from friendly nations to make port calls when necessary, adding that this contributes to strengthening ties between Maldives and those nations.

"The Maldives continues to uphold international best practices, and relevant international maritime law on all such cases," the statement concludes.

While this ship is not a military vehicle, India and some other countries have raised concerns that the information gathered by this ship may be used for civil and military purposes.

With increased pressure from India, Sri Lanka banned the vessel from docking at the country's port during its travels. Sri Lanka has gone on to ban the entry of Chinese research vessels into its economic territory for a period of one year.

As per marine traffic websites, the vessel is expected to reach Maldives by February 8, travelling at the speed of 10.3 nautical miles per hour.

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