India to replace military personnel from Maldives by May 10

04 May,2024 09:19 PM IST |  Male  |  ANI

Discussions were held on a wide range of issues of mutual interest, including development and defence cooperation.

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India and Maldives held the 4th meeting of the bilateral High-Level Core Group on Friday and reviewed the replacement of Indian military personnel from the Island nation by May 10 and noted that government will replace military personnel before the noted time.

Earlier, the Mohamed Muizzu-led Maldives government formally requested that India withdraw its troops from Male. Maldives foreign ministry said in a press release that both sides reviewed the existing bilateral cooperation. "Discussions were held on a wide range of issues of mutual interest, including development and defence cooperation."

"Both sides noted with satisfaction that the Government of India will replace military personnel at the last of the three aviation platforms by May 10, and all the logistical arrangements are going ahead as per schedule," the press release added.

It was further agreed that the fifth meeting of the High-Level Core Group will be held in Male' on a mutually agreeable date during the month of June/July. Last month, the Ministry of External Affairs said that the first batch of Indian personnel in the Maldives had been replaced by technical personnel.

The external affairs ministry earlier informed that both India and the Maldives have agreed on a set of mutually workable solutions to enable the continued operation of Indian aviation platforms that provide humanitarian and medical evacuation services to the people of the Maldives.

Last month, the MEA said that the first batch of Indian technical personnel reached the Maldives to replace the defence personnel. India and the Maldives have held two high-level core group meetings, and the third one is expected to take place soon.

The removal of Indian troops from the country was the main election campaign of Muizzu's party. Currently, there are around 70 Indian troops, along with Dornier 228 maritime patrol aircraft and two HAL Dhruv helicopters, stationed in the Maldives.

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