'New Coast Guard vessel's full complement composed of Maldivian soldiers'

All the crew of the Coast Guard Ship "CGS Huravee" donated by the Indian government are Maldivian soldiers, Defense Minister Mariya Ahmed Didi said today. The minister's remarks come amid allegations by the opposition that Indian troops will be stationed in the vessel donated by the Indian government for an extended period.

Speaking at the commissioning ceremony of CGS Huravee, Minister Mariya said that since the vessel docked at the Male', the Indian crew spent a significant amount of time giving the MNDF soldiers the necessary training to operate the vessel.

"With the vessel's commissioning today, Major Ahmed Zaeem will be the first commanding officer of the vessel. The vessel's full complement will be composed of Maldivian soldiers," she said.

The new vessel replaces the vessel previously used as the CGS Huravee, also donated by the Indian government. The new model is equipped with three water jets, making the vessel faster and easier to maneuver. According to Minister Mariya, the vessel will consume less fuel than the previous vessel and will reduce the cost of operations.

The Defence Minister further noted that the Maldives is a country with a large maritime area and acknowledged that it is posed with challenges such as illegal fishing, drugs, weapons, and human trafficking.