New Delhi, Feb 22 (PTI) India and Maldives have held a comprehensive review of ties, with a major focus on areas of defence, security and counter-terror cooperation, during a two-day visit of Minister of State for External Affairs M J Akbar to the island nation.
Akbar visited Maldives from February 21-22 as Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s special envoy and called on President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom, besides holding a separate meeting with Foreign Minister Mohamed Asim.
“During the meetings, both sides reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations and agreed to impart fresh momentum for further deepening mutually beneficial cooperation across a wide spectrum,” the External Affairs Ministry said here.
It said Yameen conveyed his appreciation for the consistent support of India and reiterated the high priority his government attached to India in keeping with their “India First” policy.
There has been some apprehension here about China’s efforts to gain ground in Maldives.
The MEA said the discussions focussed on areas of defence, security, counter-terrorism and economic ties including substantial investment in the tourism sector in Maldives.
There was also discussion on developmental partnership, capacity building, youth and cultural exchange, the Ministry said, adding the visit was in keeping with the tradition of close political consultations between the two countries.
Akbar also conveyed Modi’s personal greetings to the Maldivian President and reiterated India’s support for a stable, democratic, peaceful and prosperous Maldives, fulfilling the aspirations of its citizens, the MEA said.
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