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India stands committed to enhance defence co-operation with Maldivies: Antony

New Delhi, Apr. 15 (ANI): Defence Minister A.K. Antony on Monday said India stands committed to enhance defence co-operation with Maldivies.

Antony conveyed this to his Maldivian counterpart Mohamed Nazim, who had a one-hour long meeting with him at South Block here.

During the meeting, both sides noted that defence cooperation between India and Maldives has been growing over the years, to the mutual benefit of both sides. As close neighbours sharing common security concerns, there is scope to further develop the relationship in mutually agreed areas.

Both the ministers reviewed ongoing exchanges between the armed forces of both sides in areas of training, exercises and strengthening of infrastructure and capabilities. It was decided to take measures to further enhance such exchanges. Both sides also agreed that there is a need for India and Maldives to continue to work together to tackle security concerns, in the interests of peace and stability in the region.

During the meeting with Antony, the Maldivian Minister was accompanied by the High Commissioner of Maldives in India and other senior officers of the Maldivian National Defence Forces.

On the Indian side, Defence Secretary, DGAFMS, the Indian High Commissioner in Male and senior officers of the armed forces and from the Ministry of Defence and External Affairs were present.

The official meeting was preceded by the Maldivian Defence Minister’s visit and laying of a wreath at the Amar Jawan Jyoti and a ceremonial tri-service guard of honour at South Block.

Antony is hosting a banquet in honour of his Maldivian counterpart this evening.

The visiting Minister of Defence and National Security of the Republic of Maldives also had a meeting with the Chairman Chiefs of Staff Committee and CAS and the Vice Chiefs of Army and Navy and DG, Coast Guard.

The Maldivian Defence Minister is on a four-day official visit to India during which he would be visiting military establishments in various parts of the country. (ANI)