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Commonwealth, U.S. welcome Maldives report on power change

(Xinhua)

10:06, August 31, 2012

MALE, Aug. 30 (Xinhua) -- The Commonwealth and the United States on Thursday welcomed the release of the Report of the Commission of National Inquiry (CoNI) into the circumstances surrounding disputed transfer of power on Feb. 7 in the Maldives.

Commending the commission report, Commonwealth Secretary- General Kamalesh Sharma noted that the report provides an opportunity for all stakeholders to reflect calmly and carefully, and find a way forward based on dialogue, consensus and reconciliation.

Former President Mohamed Nasheed and his political party the Maldives Democratic Party (MDP) had been protesting since February alleging that Nasheed was forced to resign.

Amidst calls for an independent investigation by the Commonwealth and others in the international community, President Waheed appointed the Commission of National Inquiry. "There is no question but that each step prescribed by the Constitution regarding resignation of the president and assumption of office by an incoming president was fulfilled. The assumption of office of the President by Dr. Waheed on the afternoon of Feb.7, 2012 was in accordance with the constitution,"the CoNI report said.

Meanwhile, spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State Victoria Nuland stated that the United States welcomed the outcome of the report. "The United States commends the Commission co-chairs for their leadership and commitment to a thorough and inclusive investigation and review process" Nuland said in a statement. "The United States has consistently called for all Maldivians to respect the findings of the Commission. Now is the time for all parties to work together through dialogue to chart a positive way forward that respects the Maldivian constitution, democratic institutions, human rights, and the will of the Maldivian people," she said.

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