BEIJING, Oct. 21 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman on Monday expressed hope that the Maldives would maintain national stability and social development in the wake of halted elections.
"China is closely following the situation of its neighboring country, the Maldives," spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a daily news briefing, responding to a question related to the Maldives' presidential election, which was disrupted on Oct. 19.
Media reported that the Maldives police halted the country's presidential election, claiming that it did not meet a 16-point guideline set by the Supreme Court ahead of the polls. The Maldives President Mohamed Waheed urged a new round of elections as soon as possible.
The presidential election is a matter of the Maldives' internal affairs, and China respects the people's independent choice, Hua said, adding that the Chinese side hopes related parties will resolve their disputes through friendly negotiation.
"China has faith in the Maldives' government and its people," the spokeswoman said. "They have wisdom and the ability to solve problems."