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Indian Naval Chief visits Maldives in first oversees visit since assuming office
Male [Maldives]: In his first overseas visit after assuming the office of the Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS), Admiral R Hari Kumar held several high-level bilateral meetings on a three-day visit to the Maldives on April 18-20.
During the course of his visit, the Naval Chief has called on Maldives President Ibrahim Mohamad Solih, Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdulla Shahid, Defence Minister Mariya Ahmed Didi and Chief of Defence Staff Major General Abdulla Shamaal, an official statement said.
The CNS hosted a reception onboard Indian Naval Ship Sutlej on April 18, in honour of the Defence Minister of Maldives and the leadership of Maldives National Defence Forces (MNDF), an official statement said.
INS Sutlej is currently deployed to the Maldives for undertaking a joint hydrographic survey under the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Hydrographic Cooperation.
The CNS unveiled the first Navigation Chart jointly produced by India and Maldives and handed over hydrography equipment to consolidate the organic capabilities of the MNDF. He also presented a consignment of engineering equipment for further sustenance of MNDF ships, thereby reaffirming India's commitment to the capacity building efforts of the MNDF, the statement said.
India and Maldives share common perspectives on maritime security issues in the Indian Ocean and have been working together closely in several bilateral, mini-lateral and multilateral fora such as the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium and the Colombo Security Conclave.
This visit further consolidates the strong and long-standing bilateral relations between two close maritime neighbours and also identified new avenues for expanding the scope of bilateral cooperation in the defence and maritime domain, the statement said. (ANI)