The fourth high-level core group meeting between Maldives and India convenes

The fourth meeting of the high-level talks on the withdrawal of Indian military personnel from the Maldives has been held.

The withdrawal of foreign military personnel, particularly Indian troops, was a central point in Maldives President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu's presidential campaign. It is also included among his targets for the first 100 days in office, and upon assuming power on November 17, Muizzu officially communicated the request to the Indian government. According to the government, there are 77 Indian military personnel in the Maldives.

To facilitate the negotiation process, a high-level core committee was established jointly by the Maldives and India. The committee convened on January 14 at the Maldives Foreign Ministry, where the Maldivian government formally submitted the request for the repatriation of all Indian military personnel by March 15.

The fourth meeting of the core group was held at India's External Affairs Ministry in India on Friday.

A statement by the Maldives' Foreign Ministry said both sides reviewed the existing bilateral cooperation. Discussions were held on a wide range of issues of mutual interest, including development and defense cooperation.

The statement further said that both sides noted with satisfaction that the Government of India will replace military personnel at the last of the three aviation platforms in the Maldives by 10 May and all the logistical arrangements are going ahead as per schedule.

The fifth meeting of the High-Level Core Group will be held in Male’ on a mutually agreeable date during June or July.