Maldives junks pact between MNDF and Indian Navy signed during Narendra Modi’s 2019 Male visit

Team India Sentinels Friday 15th of December 2023 05:50 AM

The new Maldivian president, Mohamed Muizzu, is perceived as a pro-China leader.

New Delhi: The new Maldivian government of the pro-China president, Mohamed Muizzu, has cancelled an agreement that the Maldives National Defence Force signed with the Indian Navy during the previous government of Ibrahim Mohamed Solih to carry out extensive hydrographic surveys in the atoll nation. The agreement was signed in June 2019 during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the Maldives.

Male notified New Delhi of its decision on Thursday.

The pact enabled the Maldives to improve the safety of maritime navigation, environmental protection, management of coastal zones, economic development, and bolster security and defence cooperation. This comes close to the heels of Muizzu ordering Indian military personnel to leave his country soon after being sworn into the presidency, as India Sentinels had reported.

On cancelling the agreement between the MNDF and the Indian Navy, the Maldivian president’s office said: “In the future, hydrography works will be carried out under 100 per cent Maldivian management, and with only Maldivians privy to the information. It also said the new government is reviewing all “secret agreements” signed by the Solih-led previous government.

Since the pro-India dictatorship of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom ended and real democracy took roots in the Maldives, the Maldivian governments have been oscillating between being pro-India and pro-China. While Mohamed Muizzu is pro-China, the previous government of Ibrahim Mohamed Solih was pro-India. Before him the Abdulla Yameen government was pro-China while the Mohamed Nasheed government before Yameen was pro-India.

It may be noted that the Maldives didn’t participate in the NSA-level 6th Colombo Security Conclave held earlier this month in Port Louis, Mauritius, which it is a member of along with India, Sri Lanka, and Mauritius. Male had cited “administrative issues” for its non-participation.


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