Aerial view of Mal?, the capital of the Maldives. Photo: Nattu

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has welcomed the timely holding of the parliamentary election in the Maldives, which international observers have assessed as peaceful, orderly and well administered.

According to media reports, the party of former president Mohamed Nasheed has conceded defeat in weekend parliamentary elections, making way for a political coalition led by the country?s new president, Yaamin Abdul Gayoom, who was elected in November.

In a statement issued by his spokesperson yesterday evening, Mr. Ban encouraged the governing coalition to reach out to the opposition and to lead the country in the interest of all its citizens.

?He underlines the need for political leaders to work together and reach agreement on strengthening democratic institutions and enhancing the rule of law,? the statement added.

The Secretary-General pledged the UN?s continued support to development and democratic progress in the Indian Ocean archipelago.

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