Maldives’ New President Chooses ‘India First’: To Be In New Delhi For Maiden Foreign Visit

Maldives’ New President Chooses ‘India First’: To Be In New Delhi For Maiden Foreign VisitPrime Minister Modi meets President Solih during his visit to the latter’s swearing-in ceremony in Malé. (PMO India via Twitter)

The Maldives’ recently elected President, Ibrahim Solih, will be arriving in India on an official visit on 17 December, as per a statement by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), reported The Hindu.

The announcement comes in wake of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Malé on 17 November to attend Solih’s swearing-in ceremony.

Solih’s visit was concretised by the two sides in the just-concluded visit of Maldives Foreign Minister Abdullah Shahid to India. During his visit, Shahid had emphasised the ‘India First’ policy of the new government, according to a statement released by the MEA.

Shahid had held a number of meetings during his visit and was assured of India’s support for the Maldives to be readmitted into the Commonwealth. The country had withdrawn from the Commonwealth under the administration of former President Abdulla Yameen.

The Maldives was also welcomed by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj as the newest member of the Indian Ocean Rim Association