India has agreed to withdraw the army from Maldives said the President of Maldives, Mohammad Muizzu.
President Muizzu gave this information to local journalists at Velana International Airport (VIA) in the Maldives on Sunday evening after his first foreign visit after assuming office.
President Muizzu said, ‘Our government formally requested the withdrawal of Indian troops the day after taking over.’
He further said, ‘It is not a comment made to collect votes during the election campaign. As I am a citizen of Maldives, I want to put forward the interests of Maldives and the nation.
Efforts have been made to withdraw troops through diplomatic channels and five high-level meetings have been held so far, the country’s president said.
“During all the efforts taken before and the efforts taken so far, the Government of India has reached an agreement with us for the withdrawal of troops,” President Muizzu said.
Mentioning that the withdrawal of Indian troops will take effect as soon as possible, President Muizzu expressed hope for the continuation of relations between the two neighboring countries. In this context, he said, ‘At present efforts are being made to achieve this.’
Maldives President Muizzu also said that another agreement has been reached with the Indian government to form a high-level committee to remove all the problems faced in the implementation of projects initiated by India in Maldives.
He said, ‘Both countries have agreed to form a high-level committee. Can take immediate decisions on debt and other national crises as well as projects.’
President Muizzu met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the 28th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP-28) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Regarding the meeting, Muizzu said, “Prime Minister Modi said that he respects the democratic decision of the people of Maldives.”
According to Maldivian government data, there are 77 Indian troops deployed in the country.