Pakistan army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa departed Sunday night after concluding his first official visit to the Maldives.
Bajwa held talks with Defence Minister Adam Shareef Umar and paid a courtesy call on President Abdulla Yameen, who “expressed hope and confidence that the Maldives and Pakistan will continue working together on bilateral and international issues of common concern,” the president’s office said.
“Noting that Pakistan and the Maldives are two brotherly Muslim nations, the General emphasised on further cultivating existing ties of friendship,” it added.
Improving military ties and broadening joint efforts to combat terrorism were discussed during his meeting with the defence minister. Teams from the National Counter-Terrorism Centre will visit Pakistan in the future, according to the defence ministry.
“Discussions also took place about sending Pakistani military doctors to the Maldivian military hospital Senahiya and conducting joint patrols of the Maldives’ exclusive economic zone,” the ministry said.
The rare trip came amid strained India-Maldives ties after public disputes over the exercise of emergency powers, prompting speculation in Indian media that it was a “political signal” from the regional rival.
“For Yameen, hosting Gen Bajwa was a satisfying poke in India’s eye,” observed the Times of India.
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Source URL: Maldives Independent