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Relations with India have entered new era of mutual respect: Maldives foreign minister

Maldives foreign minister Abdulla Shahid has said that relations between India and Maldives has entered a new era with mutual respect between government and people for each other.

In an interview, the foreign minister said the trust between the countries has been restored since taking over of the new government under President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and development cooperation agenda is being implemented at quick pace. Shahid said the friendship between the two countries has reached new heights since the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Maldives for attending President Solih swearing in. He said that his government’s promise for people-oriented projects like water and sewage facilities, are being implemented with generous assistance from Govt. of India.

Indian government had announced a 1.4 billion US dollars assistance to Maldives and details of projects are being formulated. Maldives requested for assistance in construction of a cricket stadium during recent visit to Male of External affairs minister and the details are being worked out. Shahid also added that there is a very fruitful defence cooperation between the two countries and in hours of crisis, international community puts the responsibility on Indian government for assisting the Maldives.

The foreign minister said his government tries to balance relations with India and China adding that it is important that governments shouldn’t try to play one against the other. His comments assume significance as relations between India and Maldives had nosedived during former regime of President Abdulla Yameen, who lost the Presidential elections last September and whose side was further routed during parliamentary elections on Saturday. The party of President Solih won around three-fourth majority at the elections.

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