New Delhi [India], July 12 (ANI): Maldives Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid on Tuesday interacted with the Non-Resident Ambassadors and High Commissioners accredited to Maldives based in New Delhi. Shahid said he discussed the importance of strengthening bilateral cooperation and enhancing people-to-people contact.
Taking to his official Twitter handle, Abdulla Shahid stated, “It was a pleasure to interact with the Non-Resident Ambassadors and High Commissioners accredited to Maldives based in New Delhi. I discussed on the importance of strengthening bilateral cooperation and enhancing people-to-people contact including arrangement of visa free travel with several Envoys during the reception.”
Maldives Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid, who is on a two-day visit to India, on Tuesday, spoke at length about climate change and said that everyone wants the small island states to be part of the debate on climate change.
In his address at the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) in Delhi, Abdulla Shahid said, “We intend to never give up because we can’t. Everyone who wants to speak about climate change, they want to speak on the small island state. They want us to the part of the debate.”
Calling Maldives a “bridge builder” on climate change issues, he said, “We have always prioritized the welfare of the small states. The Maldives story showcases how a small state can defend itself and others in their interest. Size does not determine destiny.”
Abdulla Shahid noted that Maldives is the heart of the Indian Ocean. He stressed that the fate of the Indian Ocean and Maldives is connected. He said that Maldives seeks partnership and cooperation.
“Maldives is the heart of the Indian Ocean. The strategic location comes with a serious responsibility. It understands the crucial space it has in the Indian Ocean. We understand our role in it. The fate of the Indian Ocean and ours is connected,” he said.
“What we seek is partnership and cooperation. This is what I mean by the pragmatic approach. As early as 1987, Maldives was talking about Global warming because we were already seeing the impacts,” the minister added.
During his visit to Delhi, Abdulla Shahid also met his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar. Furthermore, India and Maldives exchanged nine new Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs).
Sharing details regarding the meeting on Tuesday, Jaishankar tweeted, “A warm and productive meeting today with FM Abdulla Shahid of Maldives. Encouraged to learn of the steady progress in our development partnership. It is directly contributing to the economic growth and social welfare of our neighbour. Shared perspectives on the stability and prosperity of the Indian Ocean region and how our collaboration advances those goals. A good day for Neighborhood First and SAGAR outlook.” (ANI)
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