The president of the Maldives has revealed that his entire nation will one day become 'climate refugees' and have to be relocated to another country - because of rising sea levels.
President Mohamed Nasheed's government is considering Australia, Sri Lanka and India as potential relocation destinations, and revealed that the country has already got a sovereign wealth fund to buy land overseas for the predicted move.
Mr Nasheed told The Age: ''They are the talked-about countries, though we haven't necessarily had official conversations with these governments.''
According to the paper, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predicts a sea level rise of up to 59 centimetres over the next century, which would deluge most of the Maldives' inhabited atolls.
Sri Lanka and India are being considered as a new base because of their cultural similarities, while Australia is hailed for its sheer space and size.
The Indian Ocean nation is a top holiday destination for sun-seekers across the globe, and is particularly popular with honeymooners for its white-sand beaches and see-through turquoise sea.
The news follows recent revelations that all of the country's luxury spas were closed down after claims they were 'anti-Islamic'.
The president has confirmed the spas have now been reopened.
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