‘God willing, the strong ties…’: Maldives President Mohamed Muizzu on his first India visit

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Maldives President Mohamed Muizzu, who attended the oath-taking ceremony of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his council of ministers, on Tuesday described his first official visit to India as a “success” for the Maldives and the region.

Referring to his India visit, Muizzu said the strong ties between the two countries would lead to increased prosperity for the Maldivians.

Known for his pro-China leanings, Muizzu told the state-run PSM Media at the end of his first India visit, “This trip has been a success for the Maldives and for the region too.”

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Muizzu said he was delighted to receive Prime Minister Modi’s invitation.

“I am also grateful for being able to hold high-level meetings with the Prime Minister, President (Draupadi Murmu) and S Jaishankar (External Affairs Minister). I am confident that strengthened bilateral relations will further boost aspirations for the Maldives in the future,” he said.

“God willing, the strong ties between the two nations will result in increased prosperity for the Maldives and Maldivians alike,” Muizzu added.

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Earlier in the day, a statement from the Maldives’ Foreign Ministry said, as quoted by PTI: “The President travelled to India at the invitation of Prime Minister His Excellency Narendra Modi, to attend the swearing-in ceremony of the Prime Minister and the Council of Ministers of the Government of India.

“During the visit, President Dr Muizzu attended a banquet hosted by the President of India, Her Excellency Draupadi Murmu, in honour of the visiting dignitaries.”

“The two Presidents also had a meeting in which they discussed strengthening bilateral cooperation between the Maldives and India,” it said.

“She expressed confidence that the island nation will continue on the path of prosperity and development under Muizzu’s leadership,” it said.

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Muizzu visited India for the first time, almost six months after taking oath in November 2024. After assuming office, Muizzu travelled to Turkey first and to China for his first state visit in January.

The ties between India and the Maldives came under severe strain after Muizzu sought the withdrawal of all Indian military personnel operating three aviation platforms from his country. The Indian military personnel were replaced by Indian civilians in May.

With agency inputs.

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Published: 11 Jun 2024, 07:41 PM IST

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